Early Intervention, Live Debates, Live Twitter Debates, Online Debates, Open Access, Open Learning and Tools, Social Media

Early Intervention: Concept, Context, “Realities” and Prospects…


In her final report on England’s child protection system, Professor Eileen Munro recommended the government place a statutory duty on local authorities and their partners to ensure they have made appropriate provision for early intervention services. Furthermore, prevention and early intervention form the cornerstone of more personalised services for adults, mental health. and older people.

However, in spite of the importance and relevance of its concept, early intervention is and has been one of the most used, overused, misused and misunderstood notions in social work and social care.  Indeed, “Early intervention” has repeatedly been distorted to suite the political exigencies of the day.

Therefore, in our next live twitter debate we wish to explore the concept, context, realities and prospects of early intervention in today’s social work and social care context and to consider some of the following questions:

  1. Is early intervention just a fallacy? What is early intervention? How can early intervention be defined in conceptual and functional terms?
  2. Early intervention implies the existence of a threshold or a given metric which distinguishes an early intervention from a late one. What are examples of such metrics? Can all such metrics be defined? If yes, how? If no, then how can one distinguish an early intervention from a late one?
  3. Early intervention may be relative to the context, what are some of the more significant and relevant contexts for early intervention?
  4. What are the realities of early intervention? Does the current context of health, social work and social care practice allow for the possibility of early intervention?
  5. How can budget cuts and increasing thresholds for intervention be reconciled with the demands for early intervention? Is there a fundamental dissonance between the reality of practice in a context dominated by budget cuts and fiscal priorities and the concept and culture of early intervention?
  6. Given the current practice realities and challenges what are the future prospects for early intervention?
  7. How can current practice constraints be changed/transformed in order to ensure effective early prevention?
  8. How can health, social work and social care initiate and sustain a transition from a crisis management culture to a culture of early intervention and supportive enablement?

Join us tomorrow (Tuesday, 6 December) at 8:00 PM (London) or 3:00 PM (New York) when we explore these and other relevant questions, and to share your views and experiences with other participants.

Topic:    Early Intervention: Concept, Context, Reality and Prospects

Date:     Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Time:    20:00 to 21:00 GMT  (15:00 to 16:00 EST)

Official Twitter Feed:  @SWSCmedia 

The debate hashtag is:  #SWSCmedia  

To receive regular updates on our twitter debates and case studies join us at @SWSCmedia.


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