Parley Vouz Health & Social Care? (An A to Z of Carespeak)


Accessing the Community:                                 Whereas you and I go out, learning disabled people access the community. It means the same thing. This activity usually involves window shopping in the precinct but may occasionally involve a Panda Cola from the newsagents.

Assessment & Treatment Units:                          A warehouse where learning disabled people are incarcerated, often for many years, to stop them spoiling the appearance of the community.

Apple Catchers:                                                           Very popular activity amongst NHS movers and shakers. Usually undertaken after shakers have shaken the apple cart on which the apples reside.


Berryman:                                                                       Modern slang. “To do a Berryman” means to do your Father’s dirty work for him.

Best Interests:                                                               What a group of professionals decide is the best way of living your life. Often involves removal from family home and incarceration in assessment and treatment unit (see A)

Boat Rocker:                                                                   Currently fashionable with Radical Change Agents (See “R”). Boat can only be rocked from the inside. Woe betide anyone who tries to rock the boat from the outside.

Bubb Breakfasts:                                                           Where the great & good gather under a noble Sir for bangers and streaky and change the world.


Candour:                                                                            Obviously different meaning from common usage. Something the Minister for health calls for, every seven months or so.

Care Navigator:                                                              A newish replacement for a professional that assesses you. Not sure what they’re navigating but they don’t wear goggles or bomber jackets.

Care Quality Commission:                                        Seen within the trade as a bunch of busybodies. Probably akin to the X Factor Panel (but for Care Homes & Hospitals)

Carer:                                                                                   Very little known of this species but said to be fond of cardigans and moaning about their lot.

Carers UK:                                                                          The collective noun for the Carer (see above). A tribe who encourage people to knit or hold coffee mornings so their members can buy more cardigans.

Category Manager:                                                         Inspired by USA Hardware stores. This rung of the hierarchal social care ladder enables you to turn human beings into categories (see loofahs & grouting).

Challenging Behaviour:                                                Believed by some to be people in distress trying to be understood. In professional circles seen as justification for anti psychotic medication regime & incarceration in Assessment & Treatment Unit (see above).

Challenging Behaviour Foundation:                       An evangelical group who gain a lot of attention by calling for things. Known to work best in pairs.

Change Champions:                                                          Modern day cheerleaders who don’t necessarily wear blazers or carry pom poms.

#Change is Changing:                                                      A 21st Century clan who like to make up three letter phrases with the same noun and verb (see also Chiropodists are Chiropodising).

Choice;                                                                                       An opportunity to pick between one thing or nothing.

Circles of Support:                                                               A modern trend for getting your next door neighbour to provide your care, bringing immediate efficiency savings.

Commissioners:                                                                     An anonymous group of people, who control the purse strings and have a penchant for sending people to their doom.

Concordat:                                                                                  The collective noun for ten or more concerned, strutting peacocks.

Continuing Care Assessments:                                       A sporting term. An arm wrestling contest between social care and health professionals over who funds a care package.


Day Centre:                                                                                A 1970s building of no historic significance, where people congregated before they started accessing the community (see A).

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards:                               An often played trump card when you want a person to know where the power lies.

Direct Payments:                                                                     A sum of money to purchase care (hahahaha) which will be micro managed by a professional as if their life depended on it.


Eligible Needs:                                                                            What’s wrong with you.

Empowerment:                                                                           An illusory gift from professional to a not quite human.

Exnovation:                                                                                  Something you do before you innovate. Very fashionable in July 2015 but had shot it’s bolt by August 2015.

Expert By Experience:                                                              A term bestowed on a Carer (see above) to stop them whinging and for them to think they are involved in some fashion.


Fairer Access to Care Services (FACS):                             A guilt inducing iniative to deflect attention away from something very unfair taking place.

Fairer Charging Policy:                                                             Inspired by the FACS (see entry immediately above). Another layer of guilt whilst bleeding someone dry.

Families:                                                                                              Editors Note: This may be a made up word. Despite our extensive research into 1000s of social care records, we can find no mention of this term.

#Fuckingpest:                                                                                   A term of endearment, used amongst the sons of Board members to family members who are a little miffed.


Gardening Leave:                                                                           A time to reflect, offered to boat rockers who rock a little bit too hard.


HSJ Awards:                                                                                       An annual shindig where CEOs who couldn’t organise a piss up in a brewery gather to celebrate their greatness.

Hub:                                                                                                        A Post Office conversion property where people assemble before going window shopping or buying a Panda Cola.

Human Rights Act:                                                                          A little known and even lesser used piece of law that doesn’t really apply to the people this dictionary covers because they’re not really human.


Inclusion:                                                                                              Having a Panda Cola with someone who is human.

Independence:                                                                                     Being in your pyjamas by 5pm and being on your own with an alert button between 7pm and 9am.

Independent Mental Capacity Advocate:                              An endangered species, usually employed to give someone a voice. Now rarer than Kajagoogoo hit records.

Indicative Budget:                                                                             A sum of money that empowers the person to purchase their care from Poundland.

Innovation:                                                                                            The mantra of all NHS Change Agents. It means to do something that has already been done before but to pretend that it hasn’t.

Integration:                                                                                            A reminder that you will always be on the outside & meaningful life can only be bestowed on you by an insider.


Joint Commissioning:                                                                        A ruck between LAs & the NHS over who pays for the vol-au-vents at the Supported Living Christmas Party.

Journey:                                                                                                     Cribbed from Reality TV & used by floundering CEOs as an excuse for unexplained & uninvestigated deaths (“We’re not there yet. We’re on a journey”).


Katrina Pearcey:                                                                                      To lose one’s soul through rampant narcissism. Soon to be a DSM category.


Leader Love:                                                                                               No idea to be honest but probably the sort of thing that a Katrina Pearcey would aspire to.

Least Restrictive Option:                                                                      A choice between prison and an assessment and treatment unit (see “A”)

Lessons Learned:                                                                                      An involuntary Tic, particularly prelevant at times of catastrophic failures. Shuts up inquisitive journalists remarkably quickly.

Lilley:                                                                                                              A modern euphemism (“To do a Lilley”) meaning to throw aspersions at reports into uninvestigated deaths & then run a mile.


Measurable Outcomes:                                                                           Having everything you do logged and judged.

Mencap:                                                                                                          A collective who give voices to people without voices and are always in the papers, calling out for things.

Mental Capacity Act:                                                                                An 11 year old piece of legislation that is widely ignored by professionals as it is still “being bed in”.

Modern Way (The):                                                                               Will probably be the old fashioned way by the time you read this.

Multi Disciplinary Meetings:                                                               A get together of anybody who is anybody. Except you of course.


Needs:                                                                                                               A catalogue of things that mark you out as not quite human. Nobody else on the planet has these things.


Occupational Therapy:                                                                           Three years of intensive, intrusive assessments to get a bed pan.

One Page Profile:                                                                                         Reducing your whole life to one side of a piece of A4 paper. Popular amongst a certain group of happy clappers.

Outcomes:                                                                                                       Something we can use to withdraw your entire support package. Fail to meet a nebulous outcome and, whoosh, watch that support disappear.

Outsourcing:                                                                                                  Getting rid of all those expensive things. A win win because you can get rid of accountability as well.


Panel:                                                                                                                  Modelled on the Masonic Lodge, this is a mythical gathering of people with extraordinary powers who wear hoods and masks.

Parental Grooming:                                                                                    A novel & well researched theory that a solitary parent can manipulate a whole team of multi disciplinary professionals into his/her way of thinking.

Passionate:                                                                                                       An emotion felt and shouted from the rooftops by Radical Change Agents (See R) about any word in this dictionary.

Pathways:                                                                                                         Not sure. But modelled on Hampton Court Maze.

Patient Passport:                                                                                           Similar to the One Page Profile but something that lets the medical profession know that you’re not quite human.

Personalisation:                                                                                             Putting you at the periphery of your life.

Person Centred Plan:                                                                                    A chance to exercise our power by saying “No” to everything you want to do with your life.

Personal Budget:                                                                                             How to become a director of your own company overnight when all you wanted was some support to go swimming.

Placement:                                                                                                          A place where not quite humans are caged. Not to be confused with a home.

Pooled Budget:                                                                                                  Spending your money on things that another resident at your placement wants to do but that you have no interest in.

Positive Behaviour Support:                                                                      An opportunity for a whole army of professionals from Kent to tell you that you are being inappropriate.

Prone Restraint:                                                                                                A popular Positive Behaviour Support strategy that involves being pinned face down on the floor at a time when you are most distressed.

Provider:                                                                                                               Someone who sends a person to your placement for £4.65 per hour and enjoys great holidays in Barbados.

Putting People First:                                                                                       That doesn’t mean you. I said “People” – you’re not  “People”.


Q:                                                                                                                              An NHS scheme that was all the rage in August 2015 but had died a death by September 2015.


Radical Change Agent:                                                                                 A self appointed title by people whose most radical thing they’ve ever done is to eat humus.

Re-ablement                                                                                                      Not sure. It implies that you had ablement, lost it, and are being given it back again.

Resource Allocation System:                                                                    A clunky machine full of algorithms that reduces your non human status to a monetary value.

Risk Assessment:                                                                                            A cunning tool used to disguise the failure to spend money on adequate support. (I.E. “You can’t go bowling. You might drop the ball on your toe”).

Risk Management:                                                                                        (See Risk Assessment above). A means by which we can stop you doing practically anything.


Safeguarding:                                                                                                 Looking after the organisation’s reputation.

Self Funder:                                                                                                     A successful West End Farce, subtitled “Whoops. There Goes My Inheritance”.

Service User:                                                                                                   Someone who can’t use non existant services.

Signposting:                                                                                                    A social care sat-nav to nowhere.

Spit Hood:                                                                                                        Another favourite of the Positive Behaviour Crowd. It covers your head completely when you are at your most distressed.

Stakeholder:                                                                                                   Anyone who can make a bit of money out of you.

Starprism:                                                                                                       A title given to those who have been showing some leader love and doing some top notch brown nosing.


Therapeutic Intervention:                                                                      A wide range of tools that includes incarceration in an assessment and treatment unit (see A), an anti psychotic drug habit, prone restraint (See P) or use of a Spit Hood (See S).

Toxic:                                                                                                                 A term of endearment bestowed usually by psychiatrists on grieving family members.

Transforming Care:                                                                                         A Civil Servant, locked in an office and desperately going through a therasorus to find new names for discredited ideas.

Transition:                                                                                                      That moment when your world is turned upside down.

Transparency:                                                                                               Another thing that the Minister for Health calls for every seven months. When achieved, it produces more mist than a Meat Loaf video.


Ulysses:                                                                                                            A thoroughly modern computer system where you can lose all sorts of deaths you’ve classified as “natural causes”.

Underpants:                                                                                                   A garment favoured by NHS types for writing inspirational quotes on.


Val Murphy (Dr):                                                                                         A modern euphemism (“Doing a Val Murphy”) to describe getting the hell out of the heat and fleeing to Ireland.

Vanguard:                                                                                                       Not sure. Possible one up the ladder from a Change Champion (See C). Often located in Concordats.

Vindictive Cow:                                                                                                 A good example of the type of feedback you might receive from a professional when you encounter family engagement.

Viral Quality:                                                                                                 An award winning project that looks like it was dreamt up in primary school but costs £974k to produce.


Well Being:                                                                                                      I’m alright Jack.

Whistle Blower:                                                                                            A mechanism to get yourself kicked out of the door faster than you can say Jack Robinson.

Woman on All Fours:                                                                                 Someone who can seriously fuck up your Viral Quality presentation by desperately needing a pee at the wrong moment.