Ombudsman holds council to account over care home’s ban on relative’s visits
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found Liverpool City Council to be at fault after a woman was banned from visiting her mother in a care home in the district after she complained about her treatment.
The woman, whose mother had been placed in a care home by Liverpool City Council, said she was banned by care staff from seeing her after she raised a number of concerns about the way her mother was fed, washed, and looked after.
The care home told the Ombudsman the ban was because of a previous incident reported to the police because of the daughter and her partner’s behaviour, but it could not provide any evidence that an incident had occurred, or was reported the police.
Ombudsman Michael King said councils and care providers with open, transparent and mature complaints handling processes should welcome the feedback complaints bring.
“In this case, rather than act positively on the concerns raised by the daughter, staff acted defensively by banning her,” said Mr King.
“When awarding care contracts to independent providers, councils need to remember they can outsource the care but cannot outsource the responsibility for that care. In such circumstances, I will find any fault by a care provider to be fault by the council.
“I’m pleased Liverpool City Council has accepted my recommendations, and, while the provider is no longer running the unit involved, I welcome its readiness to accept my recommendations and learn from this case.”