Hsc 3066

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Unit 4222-342 Support positive risk taking for individuals
(HSC 3066)

Outcome 1 Understand the importance of risk taking in everyday life :
1. explain ways in which risk is an integral part of everyday life

For many people risk is an accepted part of everyday life. Every day activities such as catching the bus, travelling on holiday, playing football, setting up home and starting a family all carry some element of risk. Risk plays a part in our health, safety, security, well-being, employment, education, daily activities, using resources and equipment and in community participation. But some adults, for example disabled people or older people, are often discouraged from taking risks. Traditionally they are not encouraged to take risks in areas such as budgeting, planning, employment and daily living skills. This may be either because of their perceived limitations or fear that they or others might be harmed. Everyone has a right to take risks and make decisions about their lives. There is a balance to be found between service user’s participation in everyday activities and your duty of care. Changes in social care and health policy mean that all adults are being actively encouraged to increase their independence by, for example, travelling independently, and by being fully involved in mainstream society through education, work and leisure. It is impossible ever to fully eliminate risk. It is however possible to minimise and prepare for risk by preventative action. To support people to live independently or to travel independently or take part in everyday activities means accepting that there are risks that cannot be avoided but can be minimised and prepared for.

2. explain why individuals may have been discouraged or prevented from taking risks

For disabled people, a move away from a medical model to a social model of disability now means that there is an emphasis on the discrimination and exclusion created by social and cultural barriers. For some services, approaches to risk have in the past been concerned with avoiding potentially harmful situations to service users and staff. People may need to take risks to achieve their aspirations but people who need support can be discouraged from taking risks. This may be because of their perceived limitations or because of fear that they or others might be harmed, resulting in criticism or compensation claims. A more positive approach to risk is now being developed, recognising that in addition to potentially negative characteristics, risk taking can have positive benefits for individuals, enabling them to do things which most people take for granted. Risk can be beneficial, balancing necessary levels of protection with preserving reasonable levels of choice and control. A balance has to be achieved between the wishes of those who use services and the common law duty of Care.

3. describe the links between risk-taking and responsibility, empowerment and social inclusion.

Personalised care is for everyone, but some people will need more support than others to make choices about how they live their lives. Everyone has the right to personalised care and as much choice and control as possible. As the pace on personalisation is picked up it is necessary to ensure that this includes the most vulnerable members of our society, including those who may lack capacity. With effective personalisation comes the need to manage risk for people to make decisions as safely as possible. Making risks clear and understood is crucial to empowering service users and carers, recognising people as ‘experts in their own lives’. Risk management does not mean trying to eliminate risk. It means managing risks to maximise people’s choice and control over their lives. True empowerment means that people might make decisions service providers disagree with. If the outcomes are part of the support plan and all risks have been fully discussed and understood, this can lead to real choice...
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