Care Homes: Abuse

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 19th June 2019.

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Photo of James Frith James Frith Labour, Bury North

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to ensure that (a) residents of care homes and (b) the families of those residents in England are aware of mechanisms for reporting abuse.

Photo of Caroline Dinenage Caroline Dinenage Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

Mechanisms are in place for residents of care homes and their families to report abuse.

Under the Care Act 2014, in any activity that a local authority undertakes, it should ensure that the individual is, and remains, protected against abuse or neglect.

Section 4 of the Care Act 2014 also places a duty on local authorities to “establish and maintain a service for providing people in its area with information and advice relating to care and support for adults and support for carers.” This service includes information and advice about what to do in cases of neglect or abuse of an adult. Where it is suspected that an individual may be at risk of abuse or neglect, local authorities have a duty to carry out proportionate enquiries.

Quality Matters includes work to improve access to complaints systems and improve the feedback culture in the sector. In July 2018, as part of the initiative, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman and Healthwatch England published the Single Complaints Statement – a guide for each stage of the complaints process, for adult social care providers and commissioners, people who use services, their families and carers. This sets out what service users, their families and representatives can expect when making a complaint with a simple bulleted guide for each stage of the complaints process. Service providers are encouraged to adopt the single complaints statements into their own complaints policies and highlight them in any information they give to service users, their families and representatives.

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