Watchdogs call for vigilence on Home Care quality

Local Government watchdogs are encouraging people and their relative to not be afraid to complain about the quality of Social Care.

A report released today shows a 25 percent increase in the number of social care complaints received by the Local Government Ombudsman, and the Ombudsman believes that what they receive is just the tip of the iceberg.

Last year, a  working group into Adult Social Care (Home Care) services was set up by Sefton Council at the request of Southport Adult Care Spokesperson Tony Dawson.

Councillor Dawson says:

“Both individual care workers and the people who run care services vary like chalk and cheese.

“Some are absolutely excellent, always ready to go the extra mile, others are far from it. Individual Care Workers can often be the most strident critics of the way that oter employees in their organisation are scrimping on care and missing visits as they end up picking up the pieces.

” A large proportion of Home Care services are paid for by the local authority who have a duty to both the clients concerned and the public to ensure that the services which they commission are of high quality. But the Council can only perform its scrutiny role properly if people let it know what is going on.

“The Care Quality Commission also have a role but this tends to be rather more arms-length in terms of inspection and they do not deal with indivdual cases.

Councillor Dawson is encouraging anyone who has a complaint, or praise, for Home Care services paid fro in whole or part by the Council, which they or a friend or relative receive, to pass it on either directly to the Council Socia Servies Department or inform their local councillor or MP.

“People should not be afraid of passing on their views,” says Cllr Dawson. “Besides elected representatives and council officers, there are also advocacy services which can assist them such as Sefton Pensioners Advocacy and Sefton Advocacy, both of which are based in Southport.


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