The long and uncaring road to justice for those neglected in care

The latest edition of Private Eye (No 1288) arrived this morning, and a quick read plus a couple of hours spent researching and reading further have proved most revealing. The home stretch (article heading!) may be somewhat encouraging, but then you discover that the wheels of justice have all but ground to a halt.  (Sorry, no link available to the article because it’s subscription only!)  But I hope the Eye won’t object to a brief quote:

“Nine years after formal complaints were first made about neglect and abuse of elderly residents of Lynde House, run at the time by Chai “Diddums” Patel’s Westminster “Care” Homes, the case against two nurses rumbles on – occasionally.

The adjourned disciplinary hearing is not due to resume until the end of July, with other dates listed in November and clearly no chance of reaching a conclusion until  next year.”

According to the Eye – allegedly!

Why has this case caught my attention?  Because I’m only 4 years along a similar road.

A little digging unearthed the Lynde House Independent Investigation Report from May 2002.  Plus a whole host of related information, through each year almost from 2002 to the present.

Jay Rayner from 2002 – A home unfit for heroes in the Guardian.

2005 report on Dr Chai Patel and the GMC disciplinary hearing Care home head denies misconduct – BBC

2008 Lexology allows everyone to see how long and winding is the road to justice, open to manipulation, in the best interests of ….. well, it doesn’t take long to work that one out, but it’s not in the best interests of care home residents who are at risk, their families or their supporters.

If anyone can tell me what has changed since 2002, I would be enormously grateful.

Why am I denied access to a Report produced by an Independent Consultant – commissioned by the Mental Health Care of Older People team but then snatched by the Local Authority as their own property –  into the neglect and subsequent death of my relative at risk in care?

Why is that report concealed behind the closed doors of the powerful but pathetic Local Authority?  The Lynde House Investigation Report bears such enormous similarities and is available in the public domain.

Why is a local authority able to provide such a barrier to justice, protecting itself and its Care provider in the UK?

Why is a Care provider in the UK able to provide such a barrier to justice?

Do they have more to hide than we know?

Am I likely to be required to spend a further 5 years of my life trying to achieve that thing we call justice?    If anyone reading this has any words of wisdom to offer me, I will be for ever in your debt and you will be for ever on my seasonal greetings list.

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4 Comments

Filed under abuse, care

4 responses to “The long and uncaring road to justice for those neglected in care

  1. val

    If the local authority hold the report and you make a formal request under the Freedom of Information Act, they cannot hold this information back unless there is some sort of legal stopper attached which they will be required to set out for you in detail to justify their non compliance. This link to my local council provides you with access to the foi charter as a pdf which sets out what you should ask. Be very specific in your request to allow them no wriggle room. Hope this helps and apologies if you have already been down this route.

    • careintheuk

      Thanks, Val – you forgot the link!
      FOIA? Do you remember that word ‘confidentiality’? Well, would you believe it – but everything contained within the full report is considered to be ‘confidential’!

      Section 41 of the Act. “Section 41 applies to information that has been obtained from another person and whose disclosure to the public would constitute an actionable breach of confidence.”

      How very convenient!!

  2. leo

    probably because that report will show failings by the local authority, possibly because complaints were raised previously that were not acted upon, and possibly because back handers are taking place. safeguarding adult procedures are a load of tosh, the authorities write the guidelines and the rules, but implementing them to the standard thats required and morally right, depends where you live and on the integrity of the authoritive figures. Ive learnt the hard way and if it wasn’t for my love for the work i do and my belief that im making a small difference, then i would leave the health and social care sector.

    • careintheuk

      Absolutely right, leo.

      It would also show the degree to which the local authority, their care commissioning department, their social services department, the CSCI/now CQC regulator failed – they all failed to ensure it was ‘fit for purpose’ before allowing it to open. And the fat-cat Care home provider in the UK failed to ensure it was fit for purpose, staffed by people who were fit for purpose, within an organisation that was fit for purpose.

      That’s what struck me about the 2002 Lynde House Investigation Report that I read this morning – the way the word “fit” was used repeatedly. If a care provider is allowed to operate a care home that is most definitely not fit for purpose, by a local authority, their adult social services department, their care commissioning department, and regulated by the then CSCI (now CQC) – well, in my book they are all UNFIT for purpose. Each and every one of them.

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