Tag: Ethics & Morals


CMA’s interim report says some care homes may be breaking consumer law

Posted on June 15th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on CMA’s interim report says some care homes may be breaking consumer law

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published the initial findings of its care homes market study, and is investigating if some homes are breaking consumer law.

Launched in December last year, the market study has examined whether the residential care homes sector is working well for elderly people and their families. Having reached the halfway point of the study, the CMA has published emerging findings and announced that, as a result of information received during this work, it has opened a consumer protection case to investigate its concerns that some care homes may be breaking consumer law. This is focused on concerns about certain care homes charging families for extended periods after a resident has died, and homes charging large upfront fees.

The initial findings of the study highlight wider concerns about the sector, which will form the focus of the … Read More »


‘This has to stop’ says abuse charity after CQC moves residents out of care home at night

Posted on August 18th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on ‘This has to stop’ says abuse charity after CQC moves residents out of care home at night

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In the wake of the urgent closures by the Care Quality Commission of the Merok Park nursing home in Surrey last December and the more recent closure of the Old Village School Hall nursing home in Bedfordshire, the charity Action on Elder Abuse (AEA) has called for a change in the law to protect residents affected by urgent closures.

AEA says that, in the case of Merok Park, the transfer arrangement collapsed into confusion and chaos, with 26 residents moved in winter, at night and in the cold. In the case of the Old Village School Hall some 50 residents were moved, many after 6.30pm and some after 10pm, with some relatives describing the process as having caused huge distress to old, vulnerable people.

AEA has written to care minister Alistair Burt, calling for a change in the legal status … Read More »


Law Commission consults on deprivation of liberty reform

Posted on July 24th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Law Commission consults on deprivation of liberty reform

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The Law Commission has launched a consultation paper on mental capacity and deprivation of liberty. The paper can be accessed at: http://www.lawcom.gov.uk/project/mental-capacity-and-deprivation-of-liberty/#related

The consultation paper reviews the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (the DoLS) in England and Wales. the Law Commission’s Tim Spencer-Lane said its goal was to replace the DoLS with a straightforward and accessible legal framework which provided appropriate safeguards for people who lacked capacity whose care or treatment was becoming restrictive.

“The provisional proposals in the consultation paper represent the Law Commission’s initial view about how the law should be reformed,” said Mr Spencer-Lane.

“We are undertaking a wide consultation process to gather as many different views and to gain as much information as possible within the consultation period. We welcome responses from all interested parties.”

The consultation period runs from until 2nd November. The Law Commission will then review … Read More »


Local authorities swamped by deprivation of liberty applications

Posted on June 11th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Local authorities swamped by deprivation of liberty applications

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The Alzheimer’s Society has warned that thousands of people with dementia may be deprived of their liberty by a bureaucratic backlog of Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards applications.

In mid-May, the Health and Social Care Information Centre on Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) released quarterly figures for January – March 2015, which showed that at the end of September 2014, there were 19,429 applications where the outcome was still not decided. The data shows 119 out of 152 councils (78% of all councils) submitted data for Q4. The total number of DoLS applications in the quarter was 36,000. Of these 8,500 (24%) were granted, 2,900 (8%) not granted and 24,600 (68%) not yet signed off by the supervisory body or were withdrawn.

Alzheimer’s Society head of policy George McNamara said local authorities were being swamped with applications to restrict the liberty … Read More »


DoLs backlog is unacceptable, says Alzheimer’s Society

Posted on February 4th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on DoLs backlog is unacceptable, says Alzheimer’s Society

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A backlog of 19,429 Deprivation of Liberty applications where the outcome was still not decided represents a worryingly high number of people being deprived of their liberty without external scrutiny or authorisation, says the Alzheimer’s Society.

There has been a sharp increase in the number of applications for Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLs). Since 2009 the rate of applications for people aged 85 and over has nearly doubled. DoLs, which apply in England and Wales, are intended to ensure that a care home or hospital only deprives someone of their liberty in a safe and correct way when they lack mental capacity.

At the end of September 2014, there were compared with 359 at the end of 2013/14. The increase has been attributed to a Supreme Court ruling last year, known as the ‘Cheshire West’ ruling which spelled out strict … Read More »


Glut of DoLs applications is a good thing, says CQC

Posted on February 2nd, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Glut of DoLs applications is a good thing, says CQC

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Soaring numbers of Deprivation of Liberty applications resulting from last year’s ‘Cheshire West’ Supreme Court ruling are a good thing in the eyes of the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

In its fifth annual monitoring report on the implementation of the deprivation of liberty safeguards (DoLS), published in late January, the CQC said the Supreme Court had clarified that a person lacking mental capacity to consent to the suggested arrangements was deprived of their liberty if they were both:

• Not free to leave and

• Subject to continuous supervision and control.

As a result, the numbers of applications for use of the deprivation of liberty safeguards has soared, from around 13,000 a year to around 55,000 in the first two quarters of 2014/15.

The report points out that this rise in applications is a good thing, since it shows willingness among providers to … Read More »


CQC to publish information about the use of camera surveillance in care homes

Posted on November 21st, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on CQC to publish information about the use of camera surveillance in care homes

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The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has agreed in principle to publish information for care providers, as well as for people who use services and their loved ones, about the use of covert or overt camera surveillance to monitor care.

Over the last year, CQC has sought views from people who use services, carers, providers, staff and other partners about the use of surveillance cameras. CQC’s Board members have approved the information to be included in the final documents but have asked that the information for the public be written in a more accessible way.

The CQC’s chief inspector of adult social care Andrea Sutcliffe said the information published for providers made clear the issues the CQC expects providers to take into account – for example, consulting with people using the services and staff – if they are considering installing hidden … Read More »


JRF Kennedy report: care homes need to be brought in from the cold

Posted on October 29th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on JRF Kennedy report: care homes need to be brought in from the cold

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An inquiry into the state of the care home sector for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) calls for sweeping change to ‘inject humanity’ back into care homes, with personal relationships put at the heart of how they are run and regulated.

The call comes following a year-long personal inquiry by John Kennedy, Director of Care Services at JRF and care provider the Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust (JRHT), who has 30 years’ experience working in care homes. Mr Kennedy says that, with more of us living longer and our care needs changing, care homes should be declared ‘a sector of national strategic importance’ by the country, which cares for 400,000 people and employs more than 1 million people.

The inquiry argues human relationships and caring needs to be central to the system and the sector – replacing the impersonal and insecure … Read More »


HC-One calls for sector-wide debate on use of CCTV in care homes

Posted on October 28th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on HC-One calls for sector-wide debate on use of CCTV in care homes

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HC-One, the UK’s third largest care home provider, has called for a sector-wide debate on implementing an opt-in, visible camera scheme in care homes, in the wake of its own internal consultation.

The company ran its own consultation with residents, relatives and staff to gauge their views on an opt-in, visible camera scheme. More than 12,000 individuals responded to HC-One’s consultation, with the following results:

• 68% of all respondents were in favour of introducing opt-in, visible cameras in homes;

• 87% of relatives supported of the use of cameras;

• 63% of staff supported the use of cameras;

• 53% of residents opposed the use of cameras.

The consultation showed a number of concerns about the implementation of such a scheme:

• Privacy for Residents – 74%

• Who has access to the footage – 65%

• Who watches the footage – 63%

• Where footage is … Read More »


Cameras in care homes are ‘expensive, laborious and ineffective’, says Stephen Burke

Posted on October 8th, by geoff in Caring Times. Comments Off on Cameras in care homes are ‘expensive, laborious and ineffective’, says Stephen Burke

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While the Care Quality Commission is to offer guidance to families on how to use secret cameras to monitor their loved ones in care, Stephen Burke, director of Good Care Guide (www.goodcareguide.co.uk), the TripAdvisor style website for the care industry, believes that installing cameras in care homes is a “terrible idea” and “a step too far”.

“Surveillance is not the answer; it undermines staff and implies that they can’t be trusted,” said Mr Burke.

“There have been a number of devastating cases of abuse at care homes lately but there are better ways to avoid these in the future. The CQC needs to be more responsive to families’ concerns and tackle the early signs of poor care before it’s too late.

“The key to improving care is not by introducing a Big Brother-style culture but to ensure the industry is well … Read More »



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