Parents Against Injustice
MY EXPERIENCE OF DOLS
Over the past two years i have had the unfortunate experience of dealing with the dreaded Local Authority once more regarding Deprivation of Liberty.
My Family member was placed into a local care home, the care was excellent, so Thank you to the Care Team, you know who you are.
My Family Member got out of the care home and nearly got run over by a car.
The next thing came as a complete and utter shock/
A Lady from the Local Authority DOLS team contacted me, and stated that she was a BEST INTEREST ASSESSOR and would be going into the home to Assess Family Member because he was very very confused and had lost his mental capacity.
The Care Home had not told me that they had put an Application in for a Deprivation of Liberty Order on my Family Member.
That did not go down very well with me, because the Care Home Manager had a mandatory obligation to inform me as Lasting Power of Attorney that they had put the Application in.
regarding that issue i used the complaints procedure.
Anyway Sharon the BIA Best Interest Assessor spoke to me for about 15 minutes on the telephone,and stated to me that she thought it was not in my Family Members best interest for myself to become his Relevant Persons advocate, and that she would be advising the Local Authority to bring a paid advocate in.
DOLS GUIDANCE STATES THAT IS USUALLY A FAMILY MEMBER TO TAKE ON THE DUTY AS RELEVANT PERSONS ADVOCATE.
The reason given by Sharon was that because i had serious long term medical problems and was working part time as a nurse at the time she felt that i did not have the full understanding to do things in my Family Members best interest because of being very close to them, and it would be to much of an emotional turmoil for me.
I told Sharon straight that how could she assume,her decision without ever meeting me, and speaking to me for 15 minutes on the phone.
I spoke to the BIA several times during that week, and was very upset that somebody was going to look after my Family Members affairs. without me having any input.
I strongly stated that i would not put up with her decision, and would appeal.
The BIA THEN STATED THAT if i did not go along with her wishes, she had the power to stop me from going into the care home or hospital to see my OWN HUSBAND.
I was of course aware of this, because of the Adult Social Care cases we were dealing with at PAIN
regarding DOLS, and some of our Services users had been prevented from seeing there loved ones.
At the end of the day i used the LA complaints procedure and demanded to be made relevant persons advocate.
In the end they made the decision to make me the RPA, but with the clause that an IMCA would come in and assist with my duty as RPA, under the Role of 39D Deprivation of liberty safeguarding.
A week went by the INDEPENDENT MENTAL CAPACITY ADVOCATE DID NOT CONTACT ME.
I had to contact them, totally not acceptable, she stated that she was going to see my Husband.
I told her that she was not going to see him without me being there.
The following week i had a call to my mobile while i was at a Friends house.
The call was at pm, on the line was a rather nasty Psychiatrist saying that he was going into the hospital to make an assessment on my husband at pm, he said i had no right to be there.
I told him under no terms that he would assess my husband without me being there, and i could not get to the hospital at that time as i dont drive,and it was to short notice.
I was very very UPFRONT WITH HIM AND VERY ASSERTIVE.Psychiatrist would state to the LA that i was not cooperating with him in my husbands best inters
In the end he backed down, and said that he would not be seeing my husband.
I rang the DOLS team the very next day to cover myself as RPA, because of the fear that the Psychiatrist would say that i was not cooperating in my husbands best interest.
To my surprise the DOLS team also agreed with me, that he had given to short a notice for me getting there, and i had a right to be there as NEXT OF KIN, LASTING POWER OF ATTORNEY and RPA
I could at least now represent my husband in the Court of Protection if there was any conflict of interest, with full legal aid.
THE 39D IMCA, i got one more phone call from her , asking if i needed any legal representation with reference the Court of Protection, i very politely said no, because we have the best Solicitors at PAIN, that could deal with the legal representation need be, but i had the ability to act as LIP.
ANYWAY IN THE END MY LOVED ONE REGAINED HIS MENTAL CAPACITY, but i really did have a fight on my hands, UNDER A VERY STRESSFUL TIME.
I will blog about more related DOLS issues in a future blog very soon.
And there is more. with regards to my previous blog.
Several months later my Family Member was rushed to Hospital with stroke like symptoms.
He also had two episodes of Sepsis . he is very lucky to still be alive.
He had been put on a DOLS again via the Care home.
I told Nurses that he should be still on a DOLS within the Hospital setting. but they refused and said because he was so ill that it would not be required.
My Family Member had swallowing problems caused by the stroke.
A swallowing assessment was carried out by the SALT Team.
He was to remain Nil by mouth and have a naso gastric food fitted for feeding purposes.
Anyway he kept trying to pull the tube out .
I telephoned the DOLS team within the hospital and said that my husband should be on a DOLS because he had no mental capacity to make decisions about his Health and welfare.
With a lot of persuasion the Hospital contacted the LA and put in an application for another DOLS.
This time I got straight on to the LA and stated that I wanted to be made Relevant Persons Advocate with out the stress of fighting for my rights.
The Local Authority obliged with no problem.
My husband was still in hospital and was getting very agitated at times so they brought an agency Nurse to look after him on a one to one basis for each shift.
I went to see him one afternoon .on arrival the HCA just sat there watching me and said that it was her job to stay there with him while I was there.
She sat watching every move I made.
So I went straight to talk to the ward Manager and said while I was there the HCA should go for a break.
I just felt that they were scrutinising me.and as a nurse myself was not very happy.
One night my husband started to cry .which started me off.
I went and pulled the curtains round him.
The next thing a bolshy HCA came dashing in and said I had no right to pull the curtains round.
He then very rudely told me to shut up because my crying was upsetting my husband.
I said my husband was crying before he got there.
Anyway it was arranged that when anybody went to see my husband the one to one nurse would go for a break
But the whole scenario left me very very upsat and distressed and I really and truly did feel like a leper when visiting my own husband.
In this case.at this time the LA behaved in the proper manner but I scrutinised everything and every bit of documentation I had from then.
Definitely put in a SAR Request when dealing with this kind of thing.
My husband is now home doing really well.
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