1.1 Describe person centred approaches
There are 7.442 billion (WBG 2016) on our planet, and no two are the same. Each individual will have their own thoughts, feelings, views, beliefs, ideals and preferences, and therefore every person should be treated as an individual and be respected for their individuality, in care we call this Person Centred Care. When we talk about Person centred care, we mean ensuring that each individuals rights and wishes are respected, and that they are treated in a way that is tailored to their individual needs, and not with a ‘blanket system’ i.e.. everyone gets up and showers at the same time which is institutional abuse. By working in a person centred way we can ensure that everyone in our care receives the highest quality care possible, that is built around their needs, wishes, wants, and personal values. There are eight person centred values that support person-centred care which all support workers must follow, these are:
1.2 Explain why person-centred values must influence all aspects of social care work
Each individual within a care environment will have their own personal way of doing things, and for those who cannot contribute to aspects of their care it is our job as support workers to ensure that they way they receive their care is specific to them. Each service user will have a unique preference towards their care, this could be their personal care, the clothes they wear, the way they style their hair, how they access the community, the way they take their medication, how they manage their money, diet, shopping, and how they perform their daily living skills. To ignore a persons individuality and to treat all service users the same is abuse, and is not something that any decent human should be able to abide. It is for this reason that all aspects of social care must be influenced by person centred values. Person centred care should be at the core of everything we do, this means that if one service user likes to shower with their socks on, you must support them to do so in the safest way possible e.g.. non slip shower mats, regardless of your own stance on wet socks. All individuals deserve the same rights, right of choice, right to privacy, right to equality, dignity, and respect that our human rights entitle us to, and therefore we must ensure that we work with person centred values at the centre of all we do for our service users, regardless of the level of support they need.
1.3 Explain how person-centred values should influence all aspects of social care work
Person centred values should have a direct influence on all aspects of social care if we carefully follow the eight values of person centred care.
² Individuality – We should allow each service user in our care to express themselves free from prejudice or assumption. A persons individuality should never try to be moulded to suit the environment, instead the environment should be altered to suit the service user. Individuals should be encouraged to make their own decisions and should not be influenced in their choices. Support and Care plans should be tailored to the individual and should be in their best interests, meet their individual needs, and preserve their dignity, respect, and allow them to practise any views or beliefs they choose. When people are stripped of their individuality they can retreat into themselves or feel as though they do not matter, so it is important to ensure we incorporate individuality into care.
² Independence – Service users should be given the freedom to do things for themselves if/where they can. Not all service users will be able to complete all tasks without support, but anything they can do without support they should be encouraged to do independently. It is one of our roles as a support worker to ensure that our service users are as independent as they can be. When someone has their independence taken from them it can cause them to become depressed or feel as though there is no point in living if they cannot do anything for themselves, this is why we should be incorporating the value of independence into care.
² Privacy – Every service user should have a safe space that they can access if they wish to have time alone, and no service user is obligated to share personal details about themselves if they do not wish to. A persons privacy should at all times be respected as when people feel as though they have no privacy it can be very frustrating and upsetting, which is why we should always incorporate the value of privacy into care.
² Choice – Everyone has the right to choose, the the right to make unwise decisions, and individuals in care are no exception to this. Service users should be supported to make choices independently, and should have multiple means of communication (should they need it) so that they can express themselves and their choices in the way that best suits them. They should never be made to feel rushed for an answer or decision, and a decision should not be made for them. Good communication and listening skills are key when respecting a persons right to choice. When people have their choices taken away from them they can feel as though they have no control over their own lives which can have a detrimental effect on a persons self worth, so it is vital we incorporate choice into care.
² Dignity – It is vital that we aim to always preserve a persons dignity, particularly in care, as there will be more situations where a persons dignity may be compromised (e.g.. someone who needs support with personal care). Regardless of the situation, be it meal times, bathing, getting dressed, accessing the community etc, we must ensure that we preserve their dignity, and that they feel that their dignity is intact through actions such as covering them with a towel when supporting them to dress, or supporting someone to dress appropriately for the weather or occasion. If someone feels as though their dignity is compromised they can feel embarrassed and humiliated. So it is important that we preserve a persons dignity at all times.
² Respect – Respecting a persons individual beliefs and views is a key part of care, as it is part of their individuality, an already protected value. A person has the right to express themselves in anyway they wish, and should not be judged on their religion, race, gender, sexuality, ability, age, or opinions. A service user should always be included in conversations about themselves (such as doctors appointments or even when ordering at a restaurant), and should be addressed in a manner that they have deemed fit, for example, and elderly man may feel disrespected by being called sweetheart by a support worker 30 years younger than himself, so it important that we respect our service users wishes.
² Rights – Everyone should at all times have their individual rights respected and protected. Our basic human rights are just that, basic, and should be the basis for how we treat each other, and used as a base to build upon when supporting our service users to express themselves and ensure that their rights are protected, such as their right to say no, to make unwise decisions, to life free from torture etc. Stripping a person of their rights is inhumane, and should be at the forefront of every interaction we have, not only the interactions we have in a care environment.
² Partnership – As support workers we will from time to time need to work in tandem with other professionals outside the home. So it is vital that we work in partnership with our service users and outside professionals to ensure that they get the best quality care that they can, and ensure a continuity of care within their living environment.