April 13, 2023 – 8:55 am
National Ombudsman: Actively and more often offer independent client support
More than a million Dutch people make use of the Wmo. The Wmo offers the elderly and people with a disability or chronic illness the support they need to live independently for longer, but also to be able to participate fully in society. It is important for citizens who apply for a Wmo provision to influence the care choices that are made. That is why the National Ombudsman investigated the extent to which citizens experience influence in the Social Support Act when applying for facilities. He also investigated whether citizens, through advisory councils for example, can influence policy and implementation in the Social Support Act, according to research by the National Ombudsman.
The conclusions are that citizens’ ideas and opinions are not always listened to and that the Wmo application process is often unclear and proceeds too slowly. Citizens also do not easily file a complaint because they depend on the body against which the complaint is directed for their care. And it is often not clear where they should submit the complaint.
Advisory councils for the Social Domain often have to do their best to be involved in policy (on time): municipalities can make much better use of their advisory councils by having regular contact with them, making good agreements and involving them at the start of the policy.
Recommendations for municipalities are:
- Take a critical look at the application process and don’t keep the citizen waiting.
- Actively and more often offer independent client support.
- Make it clear where citizens can go with a complaint and lower the threshold.
- Use the Social Domain Advisory Council at the start of the policy process, invest in the relationship and make sound working agreements.
Download this study (pdf, 810.5 KB)
Source: National Ombudsman