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New roles

Support workers: their role and tasks - a scoping study

Purpose

This study provided new information about the roles and tasks of support workers in adult social care. 

Research team

Jill Manthorpe, SCWRU
Stephen Martineau, SCWRU
Martin Stevens, SCWRU
Shereen Hussein, SCWRU
Jo Moriarty, SCWRU
John Peardon, Unit user and carer advisory group

Funding

Department of Health funding under the Social Care Workforce Research Initiative.

Background

Increasing numbers of people are employed as ‘support workers’ where their role is to help people with disabilities and others become more independent and join in with aspects of everyday life.
Although this sort of help is widely reported to be valued by service users, very little is currently known about the role and how and why people become support workers and their long-term employment plans. This makes it very difficult to plan for the expansion of the workforce and to develop effective recruitment and retention strategies.

Methods

A scoping review of the literature identified many definitions of the role of support workers. These findings were the subject of consultation with service users and carers and a report was completed.

Timetable

2007-2008

Output

Report

Manthorpe, J. & Martineau, S., (2008), 'Support Workers: Their Role and Tasks. A Scoping Review' [pdf, 556 KB], London: Social Care Workforce Research Unit, King's College London.

Manthorpe, J. & Martineau, S., (2008), 'Support Workers: Their Role and Tasks. A Scoping Review - Summary' [pdf 59 KB], London: Social Care Workforce Research Unit, King's College London.

Article

Manthorpe, J., Martineau, S., Moriarty, J., Hussein, S. & Stevens, M., (2010), 'Support workers in social care in England: a scoping study', Health & Social Care in the Community, 18(3): 316-324.

Presentations
Manthorpe, J., (2009), 'Support workers', International New Types of Worker Conference, Skills for Care and Skills for Health, Heathrow, 23 January.

Manthorpe, J. & Martineau, S., (2008), 'Support workers: what's in a name?', Social Care Workforce Research Initiative Seminar, Department of Health, London, 18 November.
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