How to raise the quality of childcare and eldercare

A new website has announced  its aim to raise the quality of care in the UK and to transform the way people choose care. It claims this aim is precisely what  the Government wants websites of  its kind to help achieve. So the Good Care Guide has been launched to fill a perceived gap in helping the cared-for and carers find the information they need to make well informed choices of providers for childcare or eldercare. Both are to be catered for ‘under the same roof’,as it were, supported  in large part by real and honest feedback provided by users of care services. This is very much in the same model as sites such as TripAdvisor, which gives would-be travellers the benefit of other travellers’ experiences of hotels around the world.

In this way Good Care Guide seeks to give parents,older people and carers a say about care they have used. It says individuals will be able to rate providers they have used for their quality of care,facilities and value for money as well as making positive and negative comments.

Making the right choice of care provider

The right choice of care provider for loved ones is a critical issue for many people over the age of ,say, 50 who find themselves as part of the so-called ‘sandwich’ generation: a growing number concerned both for the care of more elderly relatives,and also about the welfare and care of children and grandchildren.

Unlike the ‘one-off’ stay at a vacation hotel, the choice of care provision is longer lasting and the consequences of getting it wrong far more serious. Equally important ,for this consumer website to function properly, must be that both site users and care providers, are treated in an even handed way in what is a service largely using subjective reviews. The Good Care Guide in aiming to improve transparency and quality of care emphasises in its approach that through  “robust processes” of verification “only users of care comment on the site and [care] providers can challenge false statements .”

Clearly, a good information service – the Good Care Guide claims to be breaking new ground here providing for both the child and the older person –  is to be welcomed, if it will help raise standards of childcare and eldercare. It is early days yet, and it takes time for a body of comment to build-up to a level where the service becomes a comprehensive car industry-wide reference point for users. The 60life will revisit this one again in a few months time with a review. In the meantime, you can, of course, visit the Good Care Guide


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