HIA of the All-Inclusive Wraparound Scheme
Ireland and Northern Ireland
The All-Inclusive Wraparound Scheme seeks to develop a new and distinctive way of multi-agency, multi-professional working that will make a difference to the lives of children (aged 0-18) with disabilities as well as their families and carers.
A rapid appraisal HIA on the Wraparound Scheme was initiated, based on information and data that were readily available at the beginning of the process. All groups with an interest in the scheme were consulted and brought together in workshops: parents and carers, children and young people with disabilities, voluntary agencies and health service workers, as well as local communities and non-health sector services.
The main findings are that it is necessary to involve children in planning their own futures and that user input is essential to the planning, development, management and evaluation of services for children with a disability. Practical recommendations are creating a web site for the scheme and advocating accessible services and facilities (this includes fostering staff awareness and empathy) in areas such as: buildings, parks, public transport, driving instruction, leisure and social activities.
The HIA underlines that the needs of family members and carers fluctuate over time, depending on internal and external circumstances. They require coordinated practical and emotional support from statutory services, voluntary organizations, family and friends. The document concludes that it is important for parents to have a choice in the services that are appropriate for their family lifestyle, and that a partnership approach is necessary to empower parents, enabling them to take control of their family life while being supported in their caring role.
Iris Elliott, Brid Farrell and Erica Ison.
For the Institute of Public Health in Ireland and the Southern Health and Social Services Board