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CQC publishes Out of sight – who cares? report

Following many media reports and significant concerns raised by individuals and organisations, the CQC was commissioned by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to review use of restraint, seclusion and segregation for autistic people, and people with a learning disability and/or mental health condition. The findings and recommendations were published today in CQC’s report ‘Out of sight – who cares?’

The report has confirmed what families have been saying for many years, that many people with learning disabilities in hospital settings receive undignified or inhumane treatment and that everyone, including those with the most complex needs, is able to live a good quality life in the community with the right support.  It recognises that there is currently a failure to offer support at the point people need it, which often leads to restrictive interventions or inappropriate admissions.

 

Viv Cooper, Chief Executive of the Challenging Behaviour Foundation said

“The Transforming Care programme was established to deliver the change being called for by this report and many others before it, but clearly this is far from being achieved.  The Government response to the report in the media today that inpatient numbers have “reduced by nearly a third over the last 5 years” fails to acknowledge that their own targets (50% reduction in 3 years) have consistently been missed, and that further and different measures are needed to transform care.

We support all the recommendations in this report and call on the Government to accept those recommendations in full.   But there must also be a resourced and prioritised implementation plan – otherwise this report will join the dozens of others that have identified the issues and proposed solutions that have never been acted on.”

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation agrees with the report’s conclusion that to make change happen we must see strong leadership on this issue at all levels and that funding must be available to provide support early, as soon as it is needed. Pooled budgets can support joined up working but there must be funds available to go into those budgets and staff with the right skills available to deliver the support. 

Currently we are seeing the kinds of preventative health and care services which make a difference (such as community teams, speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, respite, behaviour support, CAMHs, leisure and social activities) being withdrawn, reduced or holding ever lengthening waiting lists during the pandemic.  The Government must act now to fund effective community support, otherwise we risk more rather than less of the inhumane treatment identified in the future.

In the meantime people are being harmed by the system that is meant to be there to support them – at significant human and financial cost – and the time to act is now.

 

If your relative has a severe learning disability and you need information and support you can contact CBF Family Support on 0300 666 0126 or support@thecbf.org.uk

Also see this list of support organisations that may be able to help. 

If you are concerned about your relative’s care, see our webpage for information and where to go for support.

You may wish to read these frequently asked questions about safeguarding or visit the restraint and seclusion page on our website

 

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