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 / +044 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7538736244.

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 ensuring consistent standards in adult social care across Scotland,
  • adequately supporting carers and the social care workforce, and looking at possible changes in commissioning of and investment in services, and
  • 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, and
  • issues more widely for the provision of effective social care in the wake of the crisis.

The agenda:

  • Government priorities for social care reform
  • Delivering high-quality social care services:
    • An update and overview from the Care Inspectorate
    • Developing the social care workforce - implementing the workforce plan
    • Ensuring consistency, and implementation priorities for local authorities
  • The social care inquiry’s findings so far and future priorities
  • Creating environments for delivering high-quality social care
  • 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
  • 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 workstreams, 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.
  • Recommendations from the Fair Work Convention on Scotland’s Social Care Sector on the commissioning of social care and for those working within the sector to be given a greater voice; and
  • 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 discussion in detail:

The social care support reform programme - including the framework for delivery and its implementation, and looking at:

  • 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, and
  • concerns raised in the sector regarding future recruitment of care workers, following UK Government proposals for a new immigration system, including controls related to wage and skills levels.

Support for the workforce - both paid and unpaid, 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 - and their development, looking at:

  • implementation of self-directed support (SDS), highlighted by the Care Inspectorate as an area which needs to be addressed in a report last year, and the self-directed support implementation plan, which aims to create a system of personalised social care controlled by those in care.
  • 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, and
    • 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 - including:

  • 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, and
  • the use of technology enabled care (TEC) going forward and how best to develop and promote the use of technology.

COVID-19 - with discussion expected on:

  • developments in the understanding of care homes resident vulnerabilities, access to PPE and testing, and ensuring infection control measures are suited to the care environment, and
  • support available to staff such as the National Wellbeing Hub, engagement with families and carers, and supporting the emotional and physical health of residents, service users and staff.

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places at this conference 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

Dr Margaret Whoriskey

Head of Technology Enable Care, The Scottish Government

Dee Fraser

Deputy Director, Coalition of Care and Support Providers in Scotland


Lewis Macdonald MSP

Convener, Health and Sport 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

Deirdre Henderson

People-led Policy Officer, Inclusion Scotland

Lynn Williams

Unpaid Carer