Scotland Policy Conferences

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7951044809 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7538736244.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email

Next Steps for Adult Social Care in Scotland - quality, support, and developing effective models of care

Morning, Wednesday, 7th October 2020

Online Conference


***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will examine the next steps in the delivery of adult social care in Scotland, and proposals for social care support reform from The Scottish Government.

Areas for discussion include priorities for:

  • delivery of high-quality social care, including improving and sustaining consistent standards in adult social care across Scotland
  • providing the support that is needed by carers and the social care workforce, and looking at possible changes in commissioning of and investment in services
  • developing innovative and effective models for more flexible care and support

Of course, we also expect discussion to reflect issues relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, including:

  • the impact on the provision of adult social care in Scotland, and on those delivering and in receipt of services
  • what can be learned from how services and their users have adapted that can be taken forward into the future
  • how development and implementation of social care support reform by The Scottish Government may be affected
  • issues more widely for the provision of effective social care in the wake of the crisis

The agenda:

  • Government priorities for social care reform - with a keynote contribution from Jeane Freeman MSP, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport
  • Delivering high-quality social care services:
    • Care Inspectorate - regulator update and overview - with a senior speaker from the Care Inspectorate
    • Developing the social care workforce - implementing the workforce plan - with a keynote contribution from Lorraine Gray, Chief Executive, Scottish Social Services Council
    • Ensuring consistency, and implementation priorities for local authorities
  • Creating environments for delivering high-quality social care - with a keynote contribution from Dee Fraser, Deputy Director, Coalition of Care and Support Providers in Scotland
  • Building support for care services - ensuring carers and workers are valued, implementing self-directed support, and raising the profile of social care
  • The role of technology in care - with a keynote contribution from Dr Margaret Whoriskey, Head of Technology Enabled Care, The Scottish Government
  • Developing effective models of care - integration, flexibility, and innovation.

Developments that are relevant to the discussion:

  • The Scottish Government’s social care support reform programme, and its work streams, which include: the purpose and value of social care support, consistency in service delivery and sharing best practice, designing a more effective flexible care model, support for the workforce, understanding costs, and developing an effective procurement and commissioning process
  • The integrated workforce plan for Health and Social Care, which includes the aim to aid the shift in balance of care into community settings, by delivering more care at home and reducing rates of admission to acute hospital services
  • The Social Care Staff Support Fund, aiming to prevent staff from experiencing financial hardship due to self-isolating or taking sick leave
  • Expansion of routine testing for care staff, and the requirement for care home staff and visitors to wear face masks
  • An update from the Expert Advisory Group on Migration and Population, warning that proposed immigration policy from the UK government could lead to significant recruitment issues in sectors such as social care - with particular concerns for more remote and rural areas due to a lower number of jobs which meet the salary threshold

The discussion in detail:


  • supporting the emotional and physical health of residents, service users and staff, with discussion expected on:
    • developments in understanding of care home resident vulnerabilities, ensuring infection control measures are suited to the care environment, and engagement with families and carers
    • access to PPE and testing, and how to address concerns regarding frontline worker safety in the care sector
    • recent Government guidance for employers on risk assessments and psychological support for BAME workers
    • the potential impact of recent announcements on sick pay and death-in-service payments, and support such as the National Wellbeing Hub and new mental health helpline

The social care support reform programme

Looking at the framework for delivery and its implementation, as well as:

  • the Health and Sport Committee inquiry into social care, examining its future delivery, and how the social care system should work to meet the future needs of a changing population
  • priorities for improving standards in adult social care delivery - including balancing consistency across Scotland with flexibility to meet the particular needs of local circumstances

Support for the workforce

Looking at both paid and unpaid carers and the services they provide, following commitments in the Budget to further invest in social care and integration, with discussion expected on:

User-centric models of care

Looking at their development, and implementation of:

  • self-directed support (SDS), highlighted by the Care Inspectorate as an area which needs to be addressed in a report last year
  • the self-directed support implementation plan, which aims to create a system of personalised social care controlled by those in care
  • with specific contributions expected from speakers on:
    • improving procurement and commissioning in social care and the role of the third sector
    • work being done by the Partners for Integration team on testing and embedding new models and systems
    • a care user’s perspective on the value of social care and the importance of co-production in care provision

Innovation and future models of care

  • the role of digital resources in aiding the provision of social care in Scotland
  • further integration and innovation in practice that can support more effective care delivery and key priorities for implementation
  • the use of technology enabled care (TEC) going forward and how best to develop and promote the use of technology

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders.

It seems no different with this conference. Places have been reserved by pass-holders from The Scottish Parliament and officials from The Scottish Government and the Department of Health and Social Care.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Keynote Speakers

Jeane Freeman MSP

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport

Lorraine Gray

Chief Executive, Scottish Social Services Council

Keynote Speakers

Jeane Freeman MSP

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport

Dr Margaret Whoriskey

Head of Technology Enable Care, The Scottish Government

Dee Fraser

Deputy Director, Coalition of Care and Support Providers in Scotland

Lorraine Gray

Chief Executive, Scottish Social Services Council


Lewis Macdonald MSP

Convener, Health and Sport Committee

Neale Hanvey MP

Member, Health and Social Care Committee


Joanna Macdonald

Chair, Adult Social Care Committee, Social Work Scotland

Karen Hedge

National Director, Scottish Care

Senior speaker to be confirmed from the Care Inspectorate

Leo Starrs-Cunningham

Member, The People-Led Policy Panel

Alison Macdonald

Chief Officer, East Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership

Diana Hekerem

Head of Transformational Redesign Support, ihub, Healthcare Improvement Scotland

Lucy Mulvagh

Director of Policy and Communications, Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland

Deirdre Henderson

People-led Policy Officer, Inclusion Scotland

Lynn Williams

Unpaid Carer