Care Homes: Abuse

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 8th October 2019.

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Photo of Steve McCabe Steve McCabe Labour, Birmingham, Selly Oak

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the 67,500 allegations of mistreatment in care homes received by the Care Quality Commission in 2018, what steps the Government will take to increase prosecution rates.

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

The Department expects those providing the service, local authorities and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to take swift action where anyone alleges poor care, neglect or abuse.

Since 2015, the CQC has had prosecution powers pursuant to the Health and Social Care Act 2008. These include the criminal offence in respect of Regulation 12 (safe care and treatment) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 in cases involving avoidable harm or a significant risk of avoidable harm to service users.

Although there were 67,500 allegations of mistreatment in care homes in 2018, the number of qualified allegations will be less than this figure. Within those qualified allegations, not all of them will be of as significant concern as to begin legal proceedings in the form of criminal prosecution. As such, numbers of prosecutions will be expected to be far lower than any number of allegations.

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