This practical book covers the complex issues involved in assessment procedures and care management. It is addressed to care managers and to social care providers, including staff at all levels. It includes sample forms and many examples, and explains in clear terms the implications of various approaches. The reader is shown not only how best to carry out assessments, but what is the broader meaning and context of specific assessment tasks.The first chapter explores the difficulties of maintaining the ideals of care in the community, namely, a needs-led person-centred approach, in the face of resource and procedural constraints. It looks at such key current issues as quality of life criteria and the changing role of local authority services from main provider of facilities to enabler or facilitator. Traditional assessment approaches are considered in later chapters as well as techniques for costing services and issues arising from a traditional `unit' costs approach; an alternative `real costs' procedure is recommended and explained, with examples. In the final chapter, care management issues are summarised for people with `very special needs', including adults with profound intellectual and physical disabilities, people with multiple disabilities, potentially life-threatening illnesses or challenging behaviour, and people with serious addictions. The book is informed by recent research, including major research funded by the Scottish Office which focused on adults with learning difficulties. Implications are also drawn from the authors' broader experiences of working with other client groups.