Increased role for care homes in DoLS replacement model risks conflicts of interest, warn experts

https://www.communitycare.co.uk/2018/07/16/increased-role-care-home...

How can Care Home Managers take over the Best Interest Assessors Job?

Surely a conflict of interest via the Work the Care Manager of the home taking on the process.

For one thing there could be utter conflict with Family Members and the Person that has taken on the Role of Relevant Persons Advocate, it is usually a Family Member that takes on the Role, or when there is nobody to take on this Role it usually is an Independent paid Advocate the takes on the role.

The Care Manager definitely might have conflicting opinions with regards to all Family Members, especially if there as been a Complaint put in about the Home via the Quality Care Commission..

The Dols Department is run by the LA, and mostly all best interest Assessors are qualified Social Workers that sees the Relevant Person and Their Family Members, and they decide with a Psychiatrist report to place the Person on a Deprivation of Liberty Safeguard.

Care Home home Managers are not adequately qualified to take on the Role of BIA, and may be biased to recommend if a Family Member should take on the Relevant Persons Advocate, especially if they have put a complaint into the care home about poor practice..

Obviously the Care Home Manager would put a report into the LA, DOLS team, and the Care Home  Manager may be totally biased about having Family Members as the RPA, because that Persons is allowed to see all Care Home medical and care homes notes.

THIS IS A UTTER DISASTER WAITING TO HAPPEN.

Care Home Managers could have the right to decide if Family Members are allowed into the home to see their Family Member.

The RPA, has the authority to take anything they do not agree with straight to the Court of Protection..

In my case the Care Home Manager didn't even let me know that they had put a DOLS Application to the LA.

DOLS IN MY HANDS

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.

https://www.judiciary.gov.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/guidance-no...

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