Legislation/Impact on Provision

Set of cards outlining key legislations with emphasis on their impact on care provision.

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The Children's Act (1989)

How has this legislation impacted on provision?

•Given children certain legal rights

•The welfare of the child is considered paramount(cy principle)

• Child should be cared for in own family where possible

• Parents of children 'in need' should be provided with support

• Effective intervention should protect children in danger

• Children consulted about decisions and kept informed about future

• Parents have continual parental responsibility even if child isn't living with them

Care practitioners employed by local authority social services, hospitals and education departments use and apply its principles on a daily basis to protect and promote the rights of children and their families

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Mental Health Act (1983)

How has this legislation impacted on provision?

• Provides a legal framework for the care and treatment of people experiencing 'mental disorder'

• Seen as necessary due to the dispute between care practitioners and patient about the individual's need for care and treatment

• People experiencing 'mental disorder' are very vulnerable -may not be in a position to make decisions that are in their best interests or assert their rights

Attempts to provide a balance of care and control for people experiencing 'mental disorder'

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Disability Discrimination Act (1995)

How has this legislation impacted on provision?

• Passed to end long-standing discrimination against disabled people in:

○ Employment

○ Access to goods, facilities and services

○ The management, buying or renting of land or property

○ Education

• Introduced new rights to reduce unfair discrimination

• Since 1999, service providers have had to make 'reasonable adjustments' e.g. reducing physical barriers

○ Public buildings and other facilities must be fully available to use by all

Practitioners should challenge and change situations where unfair disability discrimination occurs

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Human Rights Act (1998)

How has this legislation impacted on provision?

• Entitles people resident in UK to seek redress for infringement of human rights by a 'public authority'

○ Right to life

○ Prohibition of torture

○ Prohibition of Slavery and Forced Labour

○ No punishment without a crime

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NHS and Community Care Act (1990)

How has this legislation impacted on provision?

• Ended long-standing state monopoly on provision of statutory HSC services (NHS/Local Authorities)

• Introduced 'internal market'

• State became an enabler rather than main provider

• Act created NHS Trusts -provider organisations who made contracts with purchasing bodies

• Local authorities restructured so internal market could work in social services

○ Purchaser = made needs assessments then buy in 'care packages' from private, voluntary or statutory sector providers

• Also impacted on adult care -people with chronic or long-term care needs would be provided with sufficient support to live in own homes or domestic setting

Every local authority now legally bound to assess the care needs of any person with physical disability, disabling illness, terminal illness, sensory impairment, learning disability or mental health problem

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Sectors of Health Care



A service that a person is legally right to receive which is funded by the government and usually free and provided by a public care organisation


A service available to people who meet eligibility requirements -usually free or low-cost and normally funded by voluntary donations -generally provided by not-for-profit, voluntary organisations


A service available to anyone who can pay for it -funded by direct client payment/client health insurance -provided by private practitioner or care business

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