Private care homes: Only cameras in rooms will end patient abuse

criteria this kind of as how medicines are stored, infection-manage procedures, policies on how complaints are dealt with, how up-to-date care strategies are and the number of sharps bins in clinical places.

An inspection is basically an in-depth audit of the bureaucracy in a care home how effectively it is jumping by means of the right hoops. It can’t truly consider into account the compassion of workers, their attitudes in the direction of these they care for or their comprehending of how critical their work is. While the commission does try to assess these regions, it is extremely tough — if not not possible — to get a genuinely precise picture of what is going on.

Not like Ofsted inspections, whereby teachers are observed carrying out their task more than a protracted time period, the assessments get only a extremely short snapshot of the real care delivered. Inspectors might witness a mealtime, for instance, but not what happens when residents are place to bed. They will talk to some of the residents, but what about people who cannot talk and but are the most vulnerable to abuse?

The set-up also ignores the truth that a lot of patients are so dependent on the staff that they are scared to communicate out for dread of retribution.

Many many years in the past, although a health care student, I worked in a nursing house for men and women with dementia, and witnessed very first-hand appalling abuse by workers in direction of patients. The residents have been profoundly impaired and for that reason unable to articulate what was occurring to them. Sufferers were locked in the bathroom, tied to chairs and commodes, knowingly left lying in their own excrement. Personnel employed some of the most offensive language I have ever heard in the direction of sufferers.

But when an inspection of the home by social solutions took area, none of this was uncovered. I reported the property and many members of personnel had been duly sacked — but only right after an additional member of personnel came forward and corroborated what I had witnessed.

The very same limitations of what an inspection can actually measure, and how, remain. I really don’t really blame the CQC for this. It is in an unenviable place, whereby the public appear to it to give reassurance on the quality of care delivered, but this is a close to-impossible task. As an alternative, it has to look at relatively meaningless measurables and then gets blamed when it is located to have missed abuse. We are basically asking also significantly from a single organisation.

It’s a sorry state of affairs when we have to put CCTV cameras in the rooms of all vulnerable folks getting cared for, but I can’t feel of an additional way of clamping down on abuse and neglect as soon as and for all.



For the first time ever, there are now more female GPs than male. In addition, the proportion of girls medical professionals is set to enhance, with some medical colleges now getting 80 per cent females.

I’m delighted that the male dominance of medicine has ultimately come to an finish. But what does this suggest for the landscape of well being care in the potential? And have items gone too far the other way?

The dilemma, put starkly, is that the common male health care graduate will perform total-time, while the regular female will not. This implies that the state will get a lot more guy hrs out of a male graduate than a female graduate throughout their profession. As more and more ladies enter the occupation, we must be seeing a corresponding increase in the amount of locations at health care school to account for this, but we aren’t. We are as a result dealing with a crisis in the medical workforce. There are also significant issues about potential recruitment to the much less “family-friendly” specialties, this kind of as A&ampE.

No one likes saying this for concern of getting branded sexist. But it is not sexist to level out that we’re heading for a worrying shortage of doctors — but no  one appears to be undertaking anything at all about it.



Organic fan Ms Paltrow, separating from Coldplay frontman Chris Martin (Robyn Beck)

While I really don’t usually see eye-to-eye with Gwyneth Paltrow more than nutrition, I do agree that natural fruit and vegetables are best. But a study published in the British Journal of Cancer has advised that consuming pesticide-free of charge food does not seem to decrease charges of cancer. The results have been pounced on as proof that natural make was a waste of income. I really don’t agree.

Cancer Research United kingdom recommended that if men and women are concerned about pesticide residue on foods, they must simply wash it before eating it. This ignores the reality that numerous pesticides are absorbed by the food, and without a doubt that processed food items, such as bread, can not be washed.

Also, when I buy organic, I’m not pondering of cancer, but of pesticides’ effect on the atmosphere and about consuming unknown chemical substances.

As I’m sure Gwyneth will agree, there are worse issues you could devote your cash on. Such as a Coldplay album.

To purchase a copy of Max Pemberton’s guide ‘The Physician Will See You Now’ (Hodder), call Telegraph Books on 0844 871 1515

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