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Research & Policy Updates

RPUs provide the latest information on policy developments, consultations and key research reports, along with links to the original resources. You need to be a member of RiP to access full RPUs, have a website account and be logged in – if you don’t have an account you can create one here.

Latest Issue:

RPU 208 July 2018

The research articles this month explore care commissioning.

Commissioning care placements and other services for children and young people can present challenges for local authorities, particularly in times of austerity. The first article by Clive Sellick reports on the effects of austerity measures on local authority commissioners and independent fostering providers (IFPs). This summary links the findings from Sellick’s study with the recently completed Department for Education (DfE) review of fostering.

Integrated commissioning between children’s and adult’s services for young people who have long-term health problems is the theme of the second paper by Maniatopoulos and colleagues. Despite policy commitments to integrated commissioning, the study found that there was minimal evidence of this being delivered.

The final two papers explore services that could be commissioned to support recently formed adoptive families and families at risk of breakdown and separation. The research by Meakins and colleagues identifies that most children who had recently been placed with adoptive families did not need specialist therapeutic intervention, but that parents needed better support for managing ‘normal’ adoptive family life. The final article by Louise Roberts examines support care (also known as short breaks, support foster-care, respite care) for families at risk of breakdown and long-term separation.

A key theme of all the papers is the importance of commissioners working in partnership with others to ensure that services meet the needs of children, young people and families.

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