William Eichler 04 March 2021

Council accused of neglecting man with dementia’s ‘human rights’

Council accused of neglecting man with dementia’s ‘human rights’  image

Nottinghamshire County Council has apologised to the family of a man with dementia who was placed in a care home as a temporary measure and then left for five months.

The man had been placed in the care home by his wife while she struggled to look after her son who had been diagnosed with terminal cancer. The placement was supposed to be temporary, but after two weeks the wife felt she could not cope with the man at home.

Nottinghamshire County Council believed the man could return home with additional care calls, but neglected to complete a review despite his change of circumstances, and did not assess his wife’s needs as a carer.

As a result, the man was left in the care home for five months before the council eventually reviewed his case and found he did not have the mental capacity to decide where to live or to make a decision about his finances.

In his investigation of the incident, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, Michael King, accused the council of not having any regard for the man’s human rights.

‘The man had a right to respect for his family life, and to enjoy his existing home peacefully. But the council did not have any regard for the man’s human rights during those five months he was away from his family,’ he said.

‘The council could have identified these problems during its own investigation of the complaint, but it failed to acknowledge the errors and the impact they have caused.’

On top of the man being left in the home for five months, Mr King’s investigation also found that the family was charged for the man’s care – incurring debts of more than £15,000. The care home has chased the family for payment and threatened them with bailiff action.

Responding to the investigation, Melanie Brooks, corporate director for adult social care and health, said the council ‘wholeheartedly accept all the recommendations in the report and apologise to the family for our mistakes in their situation.’

She continued: ‘We are committed to improve and have already started acting on the recommendations. We have been working directly with the team to ensure they are working within the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) to promote well-being. MCA documentation has been revised and briefings given to staff with a new provider coming in to give ongoing training across the service.’

‘We have developed an action plan to ensure that all the recommendations in the report are met. We will also update members on the action plan at Governance and Ethics Committee,’ she added.

Mr King welcomed these steps and said he was pleased the council had ‘already started acting on my recommendations to improve its service.’

Tackling mistrust about vaccines image

Tackling mistrust about vaccines

Dr Justin Varney looks at how Birmingham is working to tackle the ‘layers upon layers of mistrust’ among ethnic minority communities that is ‘now playing out in vaccine hesitancy’.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Service Director – Development & Regulation

West Berkshire Council
Up to £96,585 per annum
We are looking for a candidate with the passion for place making and a successful track record in leading and developing large multi-service teams.  Newbury, Berkshire
Recuriter: West Berkshire Council

Mayoralty & Business Manager

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£41,292 - £50,034
The Mayoralty & Business Manager will be responsible for maintaining the reputation of both Mayoralties and promoting a positive image of... London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Joint Assistant Director - Communities and Wellbeing

Babergh & Mid Suffolk
£75,000
Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils are at the forefront of joint working and are a progressive award-winning partnership Ipswich, Suffolk
Recuriter: Babergh & Mid Suffolk

Social Worker - Early Intervention Team

Essex County Council
Up to £207 per day + Umbrella
About the RoleWorking to support adults, and their families, who have complex social needs and are more vulnerable as a result of disability, exclusio England, Essex, Harlow
Recuriter: Essex County Council

ESAB Safeguarding Adult Review Officer

Essex County Council
Up to £35027 per annum
ESAB Safeguarding Adult Review OfficerPermanent, Full TimeUp to £35,027 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue