Access to social services to be strengthened
The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health is drawing up new legislation aimed at improving people’s rights of access to social services. The legislation is expected to be put before parliament in the autumn.
The legislation will specify the time within which elderly people are entitled to receive a service needs assessment from social services. The needs assessment is to be worked out based on a ‘service plan’ drawn up by municipalities and clients that specifies the services to be provided.
The Ministry and the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities are to recommend procedures to be used in making services needs assessments. The intention is that this aspect of the new legislation would take effect next year.
New regulations will also be created to improve access to social services in matters relating to income support, child welfare and treatment for substance abusers.