Improving support for people with learning disabilities in Barnet

Improving support for people with learning disabilities in Barnet

Improving Independence at Barnet:

Local Authorities and their partners are constantly seeking to make a difference to the lives of the people they support by enabling them to achieve better outcomes and greater levels of control over their lives and Barnet is no different. We are delighted to be helping Barnet to use the “Progression” model to help improve the lives of adults with learning disabilities by supporting it to support people with learning disabilites to "Improve their Independence". 

The “Progression” model was first used to underpin a programme aimed at improving the cost effectiveness of learning disability services in England for the Department of Health. Soon afterwards it also underpinned a similar programme, “Transforming Learning Disability Services in Wales” for Welsh Government/WLGA delivered through the Social Services Improvement Agency.

These two programmes led to our original, October 2012, Think Piece . It outlined a holistic, strengths based and person-centred approach. It also explained the underpinning business case which is that better individual outcomes tend to lead to higher levels of independence and these normally cost less to support. Since then Alder Advice has worked with many local authorities where the “Progression Model” has been used to improve outcomes for people with a learning disability and to reduce unnecessary costs. Our work has included several of the learning disability projects included in LGA Adult Social Care Efficiency Programme. Click here to go to our paper which shares our key learning from these last 5 years of giving support to organisations that have fully or part implemented Progression.

Barnet LBC is the latest area to enlist our support. We began by undertaking a diagnostic review of how people with learning disabilities are currently being supported by Barnet LBC. This concluded that:

  • Barnet has many existing strengths to build on to deliver its vision, and 

  • A range of improvement opportunities exist. If these are taken in a coherent, co-ordinated manner they will deliver more positive, personalised outcomes, improved compliance with the Care Act and should lead to demonstrable improvements in value for money.

Following on from this we are now working closely with Barnet to implement some of our recommendations notably we are training the learning disabilities team in "Progression" focussed practice and advising on systems improvements, market development and community inclusion. 

To find out more about this project contact Dan Short from Alder Advice on 07748-180-390 or e-mail him at