Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Paul Burstow introduces bill on adult social care

Today Paul Burstow, who seems to have gained a new lease of life since being sacked as a health minister, introduced his Corporate Accountability and Safeguarding of Adults from Abuse and Neglect in the Commons.

As he described it in his speech:
My Bill has two elements: to improve adult safeguarding and to close a loophole in the criminal law. It would amend the Health and Social Care Act 2008 to include a new offence of corporate neglect. This new law would act as a deterrent. It would force weak boards of directors to pull their socks up, visiting their services, talking to and, vitally, listening to the people who use those services and listening to and including the families of those whom they are caring for—and, yes, engaging with the staff, being interested in them and in their professional development.
Paul also published a report on the subject today - you can download it from his website.

And a report on the Community Care website gives more background to Paul's bill:
In a contribution to Burstow's report, the authors of the Winterbourne View SCR, Margaret Flynn and Vic Citarella, explained how they received "a lack of financial transparency and co-operation" from Castlebeck, the provider that ran the learning disability hospital. 
"This was by no means the first instance of non-cooperation in an [adult serious case reviews]," said Burstow's report. "In some instances, even public bodies and health officials have been reticent in ensuring full and unwavering cooperation. This poses a threat to the legitimacy and effectiveness of [reviews] and undermines the important role they play within the field of adult safeguarding."

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