It can be difficult to measure the quality of a care relationship. K101 suggests that there are five care principals, which together result in good quality care;
“ Support people in maximising their potential, Support people in having a voice and being heard, Respect people’s beliefs and preferences, Support people’s rights to appropriate services and Respect people’s privacy and right to conﬁdentiality” (K101, Unit 4, p.183).
This essay will focus on these as a basis for measuring quality of care, along with Maslow’s hierarchy of needs (K101, Unit 3, pp.131-132). It will look at three types of caring relationship, highlighting these using case studies found in block 1 of K101. Firstly, the relationship between an informal carer and the cared for individual (in this case Ann looking after her father Angus) and how this relationship is affected by the introduction of a home care professional. It will then look at more formal caring relationships between health care services and individuals. This will be highlighted by the case study of Anwar, a 54 year old migrant from Pakistan, diagnosed with diabetes. It will explore how relationships can be affected by the quality of the care given and what factors, such as cultural differences, can affect quality of care and how this impacts on the individual’s experience of receiving care.
The first case study is Ann and Angus. Ann lives with Angus, her husband and daughter and cares for Angus, who has a diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, in his own home. There are benefits of being cared for at home by a family member. Ann’s caring for Angus enables him to remain in his own home, and ensures his preferences are adhered to. Caring for a family member also brings with it familiarity, which could take a long time to establish with a formal carer not known to the individual, as highlighted in the case study. It appears that Ann knowing Angus’ preferences provides him comfort, and he is reluctant to change: “Aye, but, but you know how I like things done! I mean, they wouldnae know how I like things done!” (K101, DVD, Unit 1, Audio 1.4, Part 4).
There are also positives for the carer; it gives them a chance to give back to the person they are caring for and the opportunity to learn new skills. There are various indicators that Ann and Angus have a good quality relationship, and they have a long standing relationship prior to Angus needing care. Ann is supporting Angus in having his voice heard and respecting his preferences by caring for him at home, while meeting his lower level needs as described by Maslow.
An informal carer such as Ann may have no formal skills or experience in how to deliver good quality care. The change from a family member to carer can be difficult for both the carer and the cared for individual. Issues such as supporting people with intimate care can cause upset and embarrassment for both parties, as they cross boundaries which these relationships would not usually...