Appendix 2. Letter to interviewees

13th June 2013


MSc Integrated Service Improvement (Health and Social Care)

Dissertation Proposal: How effective is the enablement approach at addressing the age demographic challenges: a case study.

I am writing to invite you to participate in my research project.

As a Team Manager with the Community Care (Older People) Home Care Service, I am seeking to evaluate the effectiveness of home care enablement as a resource to offset increased demand for services. I intend to frame my research within a dissertation that I will submit later this year to complete the MSc Integrated Service Improvement (Health and Social Care). My research will focus on whether the approach adopted is living up to (or will meet) policy expectations driven by the Scottish Government.

To help you decide whether to take part I have detailed below what the research will involve for you and how the information will be collected and used. If you have any queries at this time, please do not hesitate to contact me at stuart.fordyce@

What the study is about

The introduction of enablement practice in Scotland’s social care sector has been widely adopted as an approach to care at home that maximises independence and lessens dependency on care support. Despite evidence continuing to describe enablement in positive terms, there are now a number of questions arising in respect of value for money and how effective the approach actually is.

My research, will seek to answer the following questions: (i) how is the ageing population in Dundee impacting on the local authority’s ability to deliver social care services; (ii) is the approach adopted by Dundee City Council the most effective means of offsetting and preventing increased dependency on service provision, and (iii) what are the longer term implications for Dundee City Council’s Enablement Service. The dissertation will form an independent, self-directed piece of research, but is very much based in the reality of day-to-day work. It is about looking at things afresh and creating new insights that have the potential to improve service provision in the future. Why you have been asked to take part.

As someone with the background and knowledge around the introduction, and on-going management of enablement services within Dundee City Council, the part of the study I am inviting you to take part in is the survey of first line managers directly involved in the organisation and delivery of enablement support.

What the study will involve  

I will use the data gathered from the service improvement interviews held earlier this year. I may also need to get back to you for a brief meeting if I need to clarify points from the original interview.


I will not use your name in any reports of this work and it will not be made known who took part.  I will use quotes from interviews to illustrate general points emerging from the study, but I will ensure the identity of the participants cannot be traced. My dissertation will be shared with you ahead of submission on the 16th August 2013. All information will be held anonymously, using ID codes, and kept in secure systems. Hard copy records will be shredded at the end of the project and anonymous computer files held securely with password protection for 12 months post submission and then destroyed.

Risks and benefits

My hope is that the dissertation will feed into a wider consultation exercise around the challenges facing social care in the future and whether an enablement approach to care at home is the most effective means of fulfilling policy objectives. Taking part will help inform that debate and will help the organisation prepare for the challenges ahead. It presents a real opportunity to proactively consider the development of social care services for the future.


If you have a concern about any aspect of this study, you should contact me directly and I will do my best to answer your questions (see contact telephone number/email below). If you remain concerned and/or unhappy and wish to complain formally, you can do this through my dissertation supervisor: Dr Ailsa Cook, Programme Director: Postgraduate Programme Integrated Service Improvement, School of Health in Social Sciences, Edinburgh University tel: 0131 650 4028/ through the Social Work Complaints Procedure.

Next steps

If you decide to take part, please retain this information sheet, complete the attached consent form and return to me. You are still free to withdraw at any time and without giving a reason. If you decide against taking part, I would ask that you return this information sheet to me and I would thank you for you for your consideration.

Yours sincerely,

Stuart Fordyce

enc Interview Consent Form