SAFEGUARDING VULNERABLE ADULTS POLICY
The Practice Team is committed to:
- ensuring that the welfare of adults is paramount at all times
- maximising people’s choice, control and inclusion and protecting their human rights
- working in partnership with others in order to safeguarding vulnerable adults
- ensuring safe and effective working practices are in place.
- supporting staff within the organisation.
This policy sets out the roles and responsibilities of The Dental Team at Eastcote Lane Dental in working together with other professionals and agencies in promoting adult’s welfare and safeguarding them from abuse and neglect.
This policy is intended to support staff working within the Practice. Policies linked with this will include: whistle blowing, complaints, information sharing, safeguarding children, disciplinary and equality and diversity.
This policy applies to all staff (permanent, seconded or temporary) of my practice as well as all people who work on behalf of the Practice.
A vulnerable adult is defined as:
- any person aged 18 or over
- who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability age or illness
- and who is or maybe unable to take care of him or herself or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or serious exploitation. No Secrets (2000) – Department of Health
Thus all adults who meet the above criteria may be defined as vulnerable adults.
Responsibilities of my Dental Practice
- To take action to identify and prevent abuse from happening.
- Respond appropriately when abuse has or is suspected to have occurred.
- Ensure that the agreed safeguarding adult’s procedures are followed at all times.
- Provide support, advice and resources to staff in responding to safeguarding adult issues.
- Inform staff of any local or national issues relating to safeguarding adults.
- Ensure staff are aware of their responsibilities to attend training and to support staff in accessing these events.
- Ensuring that the organisation has a dedicated staff member with an expertise in safeguarding adults.
- Ensuring staff have access to appropriate consultation and supervision regarding safeguarding adults.
- Understand how diversity, beliefs and values of people who use services may influence the identification, prevention and response to safeguarding concerns.
- Ensure that information is available for people that use services, family members setting out what to do if they have a concern
- Ensure that all employees who come in contact with vulnerable adults have a CRB check in line with the requirements of the Independent Safeguarding Authority Vetting and Barring Scheme.
Responsibilities of all staff
- Follow the safeguarding policies and procedures at all times, particularly if concerns arise about the safety or welfare of a vulnerable adult.
- Participate in safeguarding adults training and maintain current working knowledge.
- Become familiar with the Safeguarding Adults Guidelines.
- Discuss any concerns about the welfare of a vulnerable adult with their line manager.
- Contribute to actions required including information sharing and attending meetings.
- Work collaboratively with other agencies to safeguarding and protect the welfare of people who use services.
- Remain alert at all times to the possibility of abuse.
- Recognise the impact that diversity, beliefs and values of people who use services can have.
- If staff suspect a vulnerable person is being abused or is at risk of abuse, they are expected to report concerns to a line manager (unless they suspect that the line manager is implicated –in such circumstances the whistle blowing policy should be followed.
- If at any time staff feel the person needs urgent medical assistance, they have a duty to call for an ambulance or arrange for a doctor to see the person at the earliest opportunity.
- If at the time staff have reason to believe the vulnerable person is in immediate and serious risk of harm or that a crime has been committed the police must be called.
All service users need to be safe. Throughout the process the service user needs remain paramount. This process is about protecting the adult and prevention of abuse.
It is important that consideration be given to a co-ordinated approach and partnership working, where it is identified that both the alleged abuser and alleged victim are service users. Where both parties are receiving a service, staff should discuss cases and work together, however meetings with both the alleged abuser and alleged victim in attendance, are not considered appropriate.
The adult’s safeguarding local contact details for Eastcote Lane Dental are: Tel: 0208 420 9453
The safeguarding lead at the dental practice is Dr Chirag Shah and Mrs Vidhi Shah
Allegation of abuse staff member
Employees should be aware that abuse is a serious matter that can lead to a criminal conviction. Where applicable the organisations disciplinary policy should be implemented.
Confidentiality and information sharing
‘No Secrets’ [DH 2000] states that the government expects organisations to share information about individuals who may be at risk from abuse. This is also stressed by Safeguarding Adults [ADSS 2005] the framework for good practice. It is important to identify an abusive situation as early as possible so that the individual can be protected. Withholding information may lead to abuse not being dealt with in a timely manner.
Confidentiality must never be confused with secrecy. Staff have a duty to share information relating to suspected abuse with Social Care. Consent is not required to breach confidentiality (capacity issues must be considered) and make a safeguarding referral where;
- A serious crime has been committed
- Where the alleged perpetrator may go on to abuse other adults
- Other vulnerable adults are at risk in some way
- The vulnerable adult is deemed to be in serious risk
- There is a statutory requirement e.g. Children’s Act 1989, Mental Health Act1983, Care Standards Act 2000
- The public interest overrides the interest of the individual
- When a member of staff of a statutory service, a private or voluntary service or a volunteer is the person accused of abuse, malpractice or poor professional standards.
If a worker has any doubt about the legality of sharing information, they must in the first instance consult the head of the compliance department.
This policy will be reviewed annually.