Shared Lives is outstanding again

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Lancashire County Council's Shared Lives Service has once again been rated as 'outstanding' by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

The shared lives scheme works in a similar way to foster care, but for adults. People who use Shared Lives become part of a family.

Shared Lives matches adults with learning disabilities, older people and people with mental health needs with carers and their families.

Shared Lives was recognised as being outstanding in all five areas covered by the inspection - safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led.

In the report inspector said:

• "People unanimously told us carers and staff were exceptionally compassionate and kind. Staff and carers expressed commitment to ensuring people received high-quality care. We saw excellent examples of how carers ensured people felt part of their family."
• "We saw excellent examples of how people were supported to remain safe at times when they were at significant risk. Through robust safeguarding training, staff and carers were able to keep people safe at times when their lives were in crisis."
• "The provider‘s robust recruitment processes for staff and carers, along with the matching process, had exceptionally positive outcomes for people."
• "We saw outstanding examples of when the service had worked with other healthcare professionals to achieve positive outcomes for people and to improve their quality of life."

County Councillor Graham Gooch, cabinet member for adult services, said: "This is tremendous news.

"Our Shared Lives service was recognised as outstanding previously. The team has worked hard to maintain this excellent standard, but has actually improved the service again as we achieved outstanding in all five areas covered by the inspection.

"Our achievements were also recognised at the national Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) conference, which underlines what an excellent service we provide.

"Well done to the team and all our Shared Lives carers for all their hard work. They should be very proud of their achievements."

The county council is announcing this 'outstanding' news during Shared Lives Week. This national campaign, run by Shared Lives Plus, began on Monday 17 June and continues until Friday 21 June.

It aims to encourage people to contact their local Shared Lives team to find out more about becoming a carer.

Could you be a Shared Lives Carer?

The Shared Lives Service is always looking for carers who want to be involved with the scheme.

One person who has benefitted is Janet who is in her 50's, who has lived with her current carer Alison for the past 15 years.

However since Alison was diagnosed with a serious illness she will no longer be able to provide long term support for Janet, who is now looking for an equally loving home to settle in.

Janet is 55 years old and lives with her dog Bailey in the Preston / South Ribble area.

Allison said: "Janet and I get along really well together. We both get such a lot out of Shared Lives and I've really enjoyed being her carer over the years.

"However, I've recently been diagnosed with a serious illness and although I am still well enough to look after her at the moment, I won't be able to continue as a Shared Lives carer.

"I'm absolutely heartbroken, but determined to make sure Janet gets the support and the home she needs when I become unwell.

"If you think you could be a Shared Lives care and welcome Janet and Bailey into your home, please get in touch with our team."

Mike Schofield, Lancashire County Council's Shared Lives manager, said: "Alison has done an absolutely fantastic job caring for Janet and it's very sad that she cannot continue in her role.

"We're appealing for someone, preferably someone from the South Ribble or Preston area, to come forward and support Janet and provide a home for Janet and her small dog Bailey.

"Janet has learning disabilities, which means she needs support around the house with daily living. She will also need support getting out and about, having days out and going on holiday.

"As a Shared Lives carer, you will get all the support you need from our team and a package to ensure all your carers expenses are covered.

"We want you to get in touch as soon as possible if you think you can provide a home for Janet and Bailey."

If you would like to be a Shared Lives Carer for Janet, call 01772 531326 or email

For more information about Lancashire County Council's Shared Lives Scheme, visit

To view copies of the latest CQC inspection report for Lancashire County Council's Shared Lives service, visit the CQC website

Tagged as: Health and Social Care

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