- Explain how current legislation and sector skills standards influence organisational policies and practices for promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and Social care services.
When it comes to protecting the rights of the service users it’s important to follow the legislations and understand how policies and procedures are put in place specially if you are a support worker. For this task I’ll be talking about legislations and skills used to ensure that the rights of users of health and social care services are being promoted in Smart care Residential unit for Adults. All the service users have a right to be given privacy and information about them kept confidential, to be respected, to be treated with dignity, to be protected from danger and harm, to be cared for in a way that meets their needs and to be cared for in a way that makes them feel empowered and more independent.
Legislations and Standards that promote these rights include
Human Rights Act 1998
Human Rights Act are rights characteristic to all human beings, regardless of gender, nationality, place of residency, sex, ethnicity, religion, color or and other categorization. Thus, human rights are non-discriminatory, meaning that all it is also an act that sets out the fundamental rights and freedoms that everyone in the UK is entitled to, it was created to make sure every one has their rights protected by helping organizations with the way they make their policy and procedures regarding the service users as they do it in a way that must respect their rights (gov.uk 2010).
Human rights are not just another challenge for a highly pressured health and social care sector to meet. If embedded in existing policies and practices, human rights can improve experiences for everybody – from service users, to workers, to service commissioners and providers, in Smart care to promote and maximize the right of the servicers we offered courses, training and we make sure to mention it when inducting a new carer regarding the human rights of the service users with the purpose of increasing their knowledge on the subject so that they
Can apply it in their everyday work. For example we make sure that all the staff know to respect the service users beliefs, religion, not discriminate against them because they believe or do things that you don’t agree with, protect their privacy and protect them against harm.
Equality Act 2010/ Equal opportunities law
Equality Act 2010 is an Act put in place to make sure everyone is treated fairly without being discriminated regarding their age, gender, religion, sexual orientation and others, equality Act 2010 gave way to policies such as anti discrimination and equal opportunity (gov.uk 2010).
The anti-discrimination and equal opportunity policy is put in place to make sure all the service users are being protected against discrimination and to also make sure they have the same opportunities the other service users have. In Smart care to promote and maximize the Equality Act using those policies we give all the staff members a book containing all the policies and procedures. We also put up posters in the staff room so that they can see the policies and familiarize themselves with it, as they have to know what the policy is. In the anti-discrimination policy the staff members know that they shouldn’t discriminate against the service users’ age, gender, religion sexual orientation and other things base on their own opinion they have to respect their choices without being discriminated against. Every service users has a right to have the same opportunities has any other residents regarding of their color, race, marital status and others and not be denied any type of care because of their choices and believes.
Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
Health and safety at work Act is a legislation created to make sure that all employees are working in a safe environment, free of accidents and other things. It’s also there to make sure the employers are doing everything to protect the health and safety of the employees. The aim of the HSWA is to ensure practical compliance and help organisations understand and implement an organizational intent to support health and safety (UK Gov. 2010).
With health and safety at work comes the health and safety policy. The requirement for a health and safety policy enables the safety management structure to be publicized so all employees know how health and safety is dealt with. To promote and maximize the rights of health users regarding the health safety policy, in smart care we give training on health and safety to all the support workers so that they know they are working on a safe environment, if the support workers don’t feel safe while working they wont be able to ensure that the service users are being protected and for that they have to know all the health and safety policies, which can be explained in training, induction, posters on the staff room and in the policy books, we also do risk assessments for all the residents and make sure to update it every 3 to 6 months depending on the condition of the residents.
Data Protection Act 1998
Data Protection Act is a law designed to protect personal data stored on computers or in an organized paper filing system; it controls how organisations, businesses or the government uses your personal information (Gov.uk 2010).
It was developed to ensure the safety of any kind of personal information from being used by the wrong people.
With the development of Data Protection Act come policies that derived from it such as Data Protection Policy and Confidentiality policy. To promote and maximize the rights of users of health and Social care services in Smart care we make sure our service users’ personal information and privacy are being respected by following the Data Protection and Confidentiality policy and we do that by complying with the 8 data protection principles. In smart care we believes that all records required for the protection of its residents and for the effective and efficient running of its care service should be collected, maintained and kept according to the Data Protection Act 1998 and for that we give training to all members of staff. All new staff must read and understand the policies on data protection and confidentiality as part of their induction process and the existing staff receives training covering basic information about confidentiality, data protection and access to records, we believe that training is the correct method for teaching the staff how to record personal information of the residents records correctly, and appropriate training is given to all care staff and all staff who need to use the computer system are thoroughly trained to do it.
National Minimum Standards for Care
The National Minimum Standards is put in place to set out the basic standards of care registered providers should provide and aim to exceed when delivering their service to people who use it. These standards are put in place to determine whether the care homes are providing sufficient care and meeting the needs of the residents who are living there, to also make sure it is being carried out in accordance with regulatory requirements.
To promote and maximise the rights of users of health and Social care services in Smart care home regarding the National Minimum Standards of care we have family meetings every month with the family and the residents, to find out if the level of care they are receiving is satisfactory for them and we also take their opinion from the meeting and use it in the meeting with the staff members so that we can improve and do a better job empowering them to be more independent.
Sector Skills Standards Inspection process
Inspection process is a regulatory process by which organisations such as CQC (Care Quality Commission) warrant inspectors to do an assessment on how well the duty holders control and manage risks to health and safety by taking appropriate action, which includes formal enforcement if they are not doing their duty, they also promote ways to achieve continuous improvement in health and safety standards (HSE, 2012).
In Smart care we make sure that all the staff members are qualified for the job and give appropriate training so that they know what to do, when there is an inspection by CQC all the staff members must be aware that their actions are being watched and analyzed by the inspectors so they know they have to do their job as they usually do, they know to cooperate with the inspectors by answering all the questions and giving out all the information necessary as long as it doesn’t violate the residents privacy, and after the inspection we hold a staff meeting to discuss the results of the inspection and how to improve if it was recommended by the inspectors, the inspection give the residents a sense of security as they’ll feel like the government still care for how they are being cared for which empowers them and makes them feel more independent to make their own choices and make their own opinions.
Power is the ability or capacity to do something or act in a particular way, as it was written by the British journal Power imbalance prevents shared decision- making (BMJ 2014).
It’s important for service users to feel that they have some power over their treatment as it is important for the service providers to have enough power to help the service users with anything they might need. To promote and maximize the rights of users of health and Social care services in smart care we try to work with other health professionals such as the GP, NHS and others to make sure the service users have knowledge of their conditions and treatments so that they will have enough power to make their own decisions which will empower them to be more confident on their treatment and help them be more independent (Hugman, 1998).
Duties and responsibilities
In smart care unit all the health workers have to do their duties when it comes to their responsibilities towards the service users as they are all perfectly qualified to do so. As it states in their contract, all the health workers have a duty to protect their service users against harm and abuse, they have to make sure they get personal care, respect their choices and encourage them to do things they can do on their own instead of doing it themselves because they think they can do it faster. It’s the service providers responsibility to make sure all the duties regarding the service users are followed. To promote and maximise the rights of users of health and Social care services all the care staff are required to provide a person centred approach when caring for the service users meaning they need to put their needs above everything else.
Accountability is about a person being responsible for their actions, always making sure you are competent to do the job you’ve been required to do and always put the service users interests first (RCN 2015). It means that whatever you do as a healthcare professional you should be able to justify your actions as it being a sensible course of action.
To promote and maximise the rights of users of health and Social care services in Smart care home we hire and give extensive online and practical training to all the care staff to ensure that they should know what they are doing , we access them to make sure they are competent enough to do it, we make sure all the staff know the care plan for the residents. We involve the service users when interviewing new carers so that they are more involved on who will be caring for them. By doing that it will give them an input on what kind of person will be caring for them and that empowers them to be more involved in their day to day life. All the staff members should follow and know the organizations policy when working specially the Health and safety at work.
In Smart care, the organisation has a responsibility to make sure all the service users are getting the level of care they are entitled to. It’s up to the organisation to make sure all the staff members are complying with the organization’s policy and procedure (Lunter, 2013).
The smart care Home has a role in promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social care services by making sure the care home has a support plan based on the service user’s identified needs, strengths and aspirations as the support plan will take into account the service user’s views, cultural, religious and lifestyle needs. They also can make sure to involve the family and other professionals involved in their care.
Providing service for vulnerable people
When providing service for vulnerable people we should take in to account their creative support. To promote and maximize the rights of users of health and Social care services we use Creative Support which is dedicated to ensuring that the service users are empowered to have a choice and control over their lives and the support they receive. This is achieved through enabling clients to be fully involved in the design, development and delivery of the service in order to ensure that the support we provide is a true reflection of the needs and preferences of the service users. This will include supporting service users to be involved with staff recruitment, training and quality assurance processes, and empowering service users to make their views known through our accessible complaints and suggestions procedures, through supporting client to become a Service User Representative and through facilitating regular consultation opportunities for clients to attend. Service users will also be empowered to enjoy full engagement with their wider community and to participate as full and equal citizens. Our staff members have a positive view of each person’s potential to achieve their goals and outcomes. Clients will be supported to make a positive contribution to their community through accessing paid or voluntary employment, exercising their civil, human and legal rights, participating in local community forums and others.
As we could see when it comes to promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and Social care services it’s important to respect their human rights, dignity, protect them from harm and make sure all of their needs are being met, we could also see that legislations, policy and procedures play a major role in promoting empowerment and independence of the individuals.
- Analyse factors that may affect the achievement of promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social care service.
When it comes to promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social care service there are factors that may affect that, facts such as: staffing, staffing levels, shift patterns, continuing professional development, level of dependence, changing health status, lack of resources, reduced staff commitment and leadership.
Staffing/ staffing levels
A factor that affects the achievement of promoting and maximizing the rights of users of health and social care service is staffing. The smart care unit when having the right staffing level it supplies staff and professionals with the opportunity to support and maximize the rights of service uses, as they will have enough time to meet individual rights and needs. When having appropriate staffing there will be enough staff and professionals that can meet the service user’s preferences; it will limit the barriers to communication and also promote good safeguarding practices.
Even though having adequate staffing levels provides staff and professionals in Smart Care Unit with the opportunity to maximize and promote the rights of users of the services, low staffing can prevent that from happening. Factors that affect that are unfilled vacancies, staff taking maternity leave and long-term sickness absences. Not having enough support workers and professionals available to work means that the service user’s individual choices may not be met; their privacy and dignity may not be achieved and it can also increase the risk of harm and abuse. Seven out of ten nurses believed that the low staffing levels meant that they were unable to deliver safe, dignified, compassionate care. Not only is this affecting the achievement of staff when promoting and maximizing the rights of the service users, but it makes it harder for the staff members to do a good job when they are short. This is because they will have to work twice as hard to fill in for the staffs that didn’t go to work. That prevents them from meeting some of the service user’s rights all together. For instance, if there isn’t enough staff working it will affect the limit of time they spend with the service users, which mean they might not be able to meet all of their needs.
To improve that I would suggest hiring more bank staff and permanent to fill in for the ones that are in a long term leave from work. I suggested bank staff because they can be called in whenever you are short staffed. And also hire more male carers as they are less likely to take any leaves such as maternity leave for example.
When it comes to promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social care service, flexible shift pattern helps a lot as it will determine whether the staff members are ready to do their work. With a flexible shift pattern the staff members will be in more shape to make sure the service user’s rights are being met and they are receiving the care that they need. But like everything else sometimes it is hard to keep a flexible shift pattern with the staff members as some staff members like to choose the days that they are working or they don’t like the days that they are working, they don’t like working on weekends which will cause the other staff members to come on their days off. That might cause the staff members to be more tired, upset and maybe cancel the rest of the shifts which will make it difficult when taking care of the service users and promoting their rights. When the shifts are not well organised it will affect how the service users are being cared for and how well the care staff can do their job.
Continuing professional development
CPD stands for continuing professional development, which means that it is a combination of approaches, ideas and techniques that will help you manage your own learning and growth. In Smart care residential all staff members are required to update their training, skills and knowledge in order to ensure that they are capable to work with the service users, and to achieve that we provide training, we update policies and procedures, we supervise and assess our members of staff to make sure they understand the importance of the subject. By continuing professional development it will enable them to recognize their strengths and weaknesses; will allow staff to receive up to date training on the rights of users of the services, how to promote them and their roles and responsibilities in maximizing those rights.
Lack of resources
One of the things that affect how we promote and maximise the rights of the service user is lack of resources. Without enough resources provided for the care staff they won’t be able to meet all the needs of the service user and that is due to the cuts in the Health Care Sector.
NHS finances are almost at breaking point, since 2010. The unprecedented slowdown in funding growth and rising demand, have made it increasingly difficult for the health service to live within its means. In the past, some hospitals have received extra financial support from the Department of Health when they have overspent, but the latest NHS planning guidance signals a shift from this approach by asking providers to balance their budgets by the end of 2016/17(Robertson, 2016), and because of that the service users have to wait longer for diagnosis and treatment as services struggle to employ the staff or fund the premises and equipment needed to treat everyone who needs care in a timely way. National minimum waiting time targets attempt to limit the extent to which the NHS can delay access to some services which can put service users at risk because they have to wait a long time for treatment.
Lack of leadership meaning if the manager doesn’t have appropriate training to manage the care setting he/she wont have enough knowledge on how to run a care setting in order to meet all the service users needs. As he or she might may not be able to secure appropriate funding, promote a trusting relationship and improve resources that the care setting might need to provide a better service.
As we could see there are a lot of factors that may affect the achievement of promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social careservice even though there are a lot of legislations, policy and procedures put in place to protect the service users rights.
- Analyse how communication between care workers and individuals contribute to promoting and maximising the rights of users of health and social care services.
Communication is one of the best ways that the Smart care home uses to convey what you want to say to the service users and their families in order to contribute to promote and maximise the rights of users of health and social care services. For that I’ll be discussing methods to overcome differences in communication, such as second language, disability, recording information for continuous improvement, feedback, complaints, comments and recommendations for improvement.
In Smart care unit all the carers comes from different cultures and backgrounds which creates a very diverse setting with almost 90% of the carers having English as their second language. The benefit of speaking multiple languages while working in a care setting is that some of the residents can’t speak English or they forget how to because of dementia, so having carers that can speak the same language as the residents will make it easier for them to communicate with each other as well as with their families. That will help promote and maximise the rights of the service users by helping them expressing themselves better. Having carers speaking different languages is not always a good thing as sometimes they talk to each other in their own languages making the service users uncomfortable as he/she don’t know what they are talking about. Also not having English as your first language might create a problem when pronouncing words as the accent is stronger which makes it hard for the residents to understand what they are saying.
In Smart Care unit we deal with service users that have different kinds of disabilities such as physical, visual and hearing impairment and that can lead to barriers in communication. To prevent the barriers to communication the care staff should make use of effective communication such as using symbols, pictures and others to promote and maximize the rights of users of the services so applying the correct communication skills to each service user and providing technological devices that may be necessary for their use is what we aim for.
To provide the best service possible for those with a disability we offer appropriate training on the use of technological aids and the different methods of communication that they might use with the residents. To help we also have to hired some carers with hand sign knowledge in order to help improve the Communication between care workers and the service users to help promote and maximize their rights.
Feedback and recommendations of improvement
In Smart care unit Feedback is very important when it comes to promoting and maximizing the rights of users of health and social care services as it is a way to record information and with thatwe’ll be able to find outwhat we are doing wrong and how we can improve. In smart care we always ask the residents, visitors and family members to give us feedback on how we can improve our services by having a family meeting to ask for their opinion, fill in a form and leave suggestions in a suggestion box. For the residents the manager has a one on one with them, then conduct a staff meeting to inform us on what they said needs improving on. It is the manager’s responsibility to co e up with an action plan so that we can work on improving it. Although we try to follow the recommendations they give us we face some problems, as some of their recommendation is a bit unrealistic as they ask for things that we can’t deliver due to financial constraints.
When it comes to making a complaint Smart care unit has a complaint policy, which is if you are, dissatisfied with any aspect of our service, you may wish to make a more formal complaint.
We take all the complaints we receive very seriously and do our best to work with our customers to sort them out as soon as possible after they are brought to our attention.
So if someone wants to make a complaint they have to give us the details of their complaint within 12 months of the incident, or within 12 months of them becoming aware of the problem. After that we will respond to their concerns considerately, quickly and as effectively as possible. A complaint can be made through the phone or verbally and the manager will deal with it as she is more qualified to resolve the issue.
The principles and guidelines for making complaints also has to ensure that users of the services or those who make complaints are not discriminated against or treated unfairly because of their opinions; it promote the freedom of speech for individuals and users of the services to express themselves and their views of the services that are being provided.
Complaints help promote and maximize the rights of the service users but it also prevents you from doing so the complaint has no bases what so ever as some family members only do it because they can and they want everything to go their way.
By using different methods of communication its possible to communicate with all the service users that has any kind of disability so if the service providers has the appropriate training and knowledge they will be able to communicate with the service users and their families and also help promote and maximise their rights.
Learning Outcome 4
4.1 Review current legislations, codes of practice and policy that apply to the handling of medication.
When it comes to handling medication there are a lot of legislations, policy and procedures that needs to be taken into consideration, such as: Data protection Act 1998, human rights Act 1998, consumer protection Act 1987, Misuse of drugs Act 1971, COSHH, RIDDOR, the Human Medicines Regulations 2012 and the Medicines Act 1968, so for this question I’ll be covering those legislations that are applied by the handling of medication.
Consumer Protection Act 1987
Consumer Protection Act 1987 is an Act of law put in place to protect consumers while respecting their rights when buying goods and services. The Consumer Protection Act was created on 1 March 1988 and aims at making the producer of supplier of a product responsible for any defect, which may harm the consumer. This is referred to as ‘strict liability’ and it makes it easier for an injured customer to sue for compensation. A product is considered defective if it does not provide the safety, which a person is entitled to expect (gov.uk 2010).
For example: a child is sick and the parent goes to the pharmacy to get medication and in the container it says to give half the tablet and the parent thinks it best to crush the tablet as it is easier to swallow not following the instructions on the label and after that, the child suffers some after effects Consequently the manufacturer will not be liable for any ensuing harm that may come to the patient or the person administering it under the Consumer Protection Act 1987 as it said specifically to give half the tablet not to crush half the tablet so it is very important to follow the right instructions when administering medication as it might have consequences when not followed properly.
A consumer when buying or getting a prescription let’s say from the pharmacy he/she should have all the information necessary in order to take the medication without having any problems.
Data Protection Act 1998
Data protection Act 1998 was developed to ensure the safety of any kind of personal information from being used by the wrong people.
When it comes to Data Protection Act in regards with handling medication its very important that the confidentiality is maintained specially by those who prescribe the medication and those who collect the medication. The good thing about Data Protection Act is that all the client’s personal information is kept confidential and it most likely protects your personal information, to comply with that all 8 principles of data protection should be applied. Although it was an Act made to protect people’s personal information it doesn’t always work when it comes to handling medication because the people’s personal information is stored in a password protected computer or a locked cabinet file and computers can be hacked and cabinets broken so it’s possible for someone to get the necessary information they might need to commit fraud or harm someone. If a person gets hold of clients personal information they can easily know what medication the person is on and where they get it from and get it from themselves as it is not required to bring your ID with you to pick up a prescription from the pharmacy. The same thing can happen if they hack the computer containing someone’s personal information they can change someone’s prescription intentionally putting them at risk.
Human rights Act 1998
Human rights Act 1998 is an act put in place to protect the rights of individuals; the good thing about this act is that it gives people the “right to life”. For example if someone is diagnosed with cancer the human rights Act states that “Care must be given with respect and be proportionate to the needs of the person.” Which means the person has a right to get the right medication and treatment.
Although the “right to life” is fundamental and is now preserved in the UK law, the Act states that therefore, medication should be given in its safest form to protect patients from any adverse clinical outcome. Although the right to life states that every life matters there are cases that when someone is terminally ill they don’t receive the right medication because some might say they will die regardless of anything so they are just given enough medication to get them by until they die and its not really fair has their right to life is not being protected and preserved.
Misuse of Drugs Act 1971
Misuse of Drugs Act is an act put in place with the purpose to prevent the misuse of controlled drugs. To achieve that they imposed a complete ban on the possession, supply, manufacture, import and export of controlled drugs except as allowed by regulations or by license from the Secretary of State (Department of Health; 2014).
The Act makes three classes of controlled substances, A, B, and C, and ranges of penalties for illegal or unlicensed possession and possession with intent to supply are graded differently within each class. The lists of substances within each class can be amended so the Home Secretary can list new drugs and upgrade, downgrade or delist previously controlled drugs.
Although the act is in place to prevent misuse of controlled drugs it doesn’t mean it makes it safer to be consumed as it has side effects such as people getting addicted to them even though they are controlled drugs, people can buy the drugs with the intent to supply them as they are getting it in a regulated way, sometimes those drugs are prescribed to someone who don’t really need putting the person at risk of an addiction.
The Human Medicines Regulations 2012
The human medicine Regulations 2012 is an Act established by the law of the United Kingdom regarding medicinal products for human use.
They established a complete regime for the authorization of products; for the manufacture, import, distribution, sale and supply of those products; for their labeling and advertising (Department of Health, 2014). The regulations introduce a small number of limited policy changes to ensure that the legislation is fit for purpose. By implementing this regulation the pharmacists wont have to call the prescriber when they wish to make changes to directions for use of a prescribed medicine. They will be able to change the dose and duration of the medicine to optimize a patient’s use of it. It allows the pharmacist to make changes to the distributing label of a medicine but it does not allow them to dispense a distribute other than that specified by the prescriber. Any changes to the direction and dosages of a medicine must still reflect the clinical intent of the prescriber.
Pharmacists are also given the freedom to use their professional judgment on the precautions that are added to a dispensing label for a medicine. Guidance about these changes is being developed by the MHRA in partnership with regulators and pharmacy organisations. With all those changes it might lead to the pharmacists making a mistake that can put someone’s life at risk.
As we could see although there are a lot of legislations policies and procedures in place when handling medicine but there are still flaws in those legislations, specially when it comes to controlled drugs but most of the time it does work in order to protect individuals from consuming the wrong drugs.
4.2 Evaluate the effectiveness of policies and procedures within a health and social care setting for administering medication.
When administering medication it’s important to know how effective policies and procedures within a health and social care setting works, so for this task I’ll be evaluatingcurrent standards and legislations, codes of practice and policies, national inquiries, ethical issues, service user choice, acceptable risk and standard for medication.
Current standards and legislations
In the organization I work for the nurses are the ones who handle medications and for that they have training and good knowledge on the service users condition so that there are no mistakes. Every registered nurse is legally responsible for the correct administration of drugs including the five “rights” of administration that are: right patient, right drug, right dose, right route and right time. So before giving the medication the nurse needs to check the patient name and date of birth before giving the medication to make sure she is giving it to the right person.
To make sure it is the right drug when she takes it out of the shelf she should identify the drug check it three times and also check the expiry date before administering the drug, she also has to check the dose, read the container label and use proper measuring devices for liquids, do not crush tablets or open capsules unless directed to by the prescriber. The nurse has to make sure to only give the service user the medications by the route designated for that medication. She has to know the abbreviations for the different routes and finally she has to make sure that the medication is given at the right time as drugs should be given within 20 minutes of the prescribed time. All the medication that is given to the residents should be registered and signed by the nurse in case something happens its registered in the system, they use a computer to register all the medication given as one of the organizational policy, so all of the organizational policies on administering medication should be followed in order to avoid mistakes. Most elderly people in care homes are taking several medications and errors may arise at the point of prescribing, dispensing, administering or monitoring that medication if the organizational procedures are not followed (Department oh Health 2014).
As a requirement when administering medication in my care setting there are other procedures and policies including how the medication is stored. Which means controlled medication should be stored safely somewhere the residents or someone else can’t reach as it might cause them to overdose, someone stealing them and causing harm to them. It falls under the Misuse of Drug Act 1971 and if not followed correctly it can lead to death and disciplinary action. In my care setting the residents have their own medication boxes with their names on it, as there are different nurses on shift an the medication is kept in a locked compartment that can only be accessed by the nurse, deputy manager and manager. This stops anyone who is not authorized from having access to the medication; also to avoid any problems the nurses personally administer the medication to the residents when it is the time to do so as each medication is given in appropriate timing so that the service users health won’t be put at risk.
Codes of practice and policies
When dealing with administering medication in my care setting its important to follow the safe handling and administering of medication policy this policy aims to inform all health professionals and staff who are involved in the handling of medicines, of the correct procedure for safe handling, ordering, prescribing, recording, storage, transportation, administration and disposal of medicines and related preparations, so in my care setting all the codes of practice and policies must be followed according to the organizational procedures.
When giving medication there are risks involved in drug administration so the service users have the right to be informed of the name, purpose, action and potential side effects of the drugs they are taking and they also have a right to refuse a medication regardless of the consequences.
Ethical issues and service user’s choice
One of the things we really take into consideration is the service users right to make their own choices within their mental capacity. So one of the problems we face when administering medication is that the service users refuse to take their medication from time to time as most of the residents in there have dementia so they don’t always remember that they have to take medication, so in one hand they need take their medication to help with their health but we cant force them to take the medications has that is against their rights so what we do is we try to explain to them why we are giving them the medication and what are the benefits of taking them and the consequences of not taking them. If even after that the service users refuse we can also try to give them later as some of them have to take their medication more than once a day since they might change their mind. Regardless of what we think is best for the service users, we have to always respect their choices as they have a right to choose to take the medication or not, what medication they want or even choose not to take any altogether. All we can do is try to persuade them otherwise and respect their choices.
There are cases when a service user who suffers cancer wants to try experimental drugs disregarding the side effects. That is an acceptable risk on their part as they know the medication might have side effects and choose to take it anyway. we can only respect their choices and let them take what they want as they are the ones who chose to.
When it comes to administering medication there are a lot of policies and procedures to follow in order to protect the service users rights and to make sure there are no mistakes that might put the service users life at risk.
3.1 Use a case study from a health and social care setting to identify the extent to which individuals are at risk of harm.
For this task I’ll be using a case study as an example of the extent to which some individuals are put at risk of harm. This case study is about malnutrition and pressure sores in a care setting, which resulted in the death of five elderly residents. When it comes to caring for someone it is expected that the person receives the best care possible in order for their needs to be met, but in some cases that’s not always what happens as some might experience neglect and abuse within the settings by the workers within their own organization, as is the case of this case study. In this care home there were a high risk of harm for the residents as they were being neglected, by not being fed and given the appropriate amount of nutrients needed to keep them as healthy as possible. This is lead to malnutrition, not being repositioned for hours which in terms lead to them getting pressure sores and that lead to 5 fatalities.
Additional thing that made it more obvious that those residents were at risk is the fact that numerous Safeguarding and Social Care Regulatory bodies got involved in the case as soon as one of the residents was taken to the hospital and the doctor raised a safeguarding alert in regards to the residents in the care home.
All of these could have been avoided if the organization had done something to improve their service as it was suggested by the CQC when they inspected the care home and said the standard of care was marginal and that improvements should have been made however if it was so bad they would have closed the place down so that the organization should have complied with health and safety regulation. Do the necessary risk assessment, given the staff proper training, should have communicated better with other professionals and because that was not done on time it increased the extent to which the individuals ware at risk of harm.
After the fatalities a case review was held with the intent to figure out what needed to be done to protect the surviving residents of the care home from harm. Within a week of the review all the residents were moved to a safer place, when they realized the poor standards of the care home. It wasn’t a impulsive reaction as they had to balance the safety of the service users against the disruptions of a sudden move as they are in a fragile state.
The members of staff were referred to local authorities and CQC to the Nursing and midwifery council and other independent safeguarding authority for disciplinary action because they failed in applying their duty of care by failing to protect their residents from harm and neglect. Although it might not have being their fault in doing so, if they were not given enough resources to work with by the organization. If that is the case the care staff might be able to learn from their mistakes and know what they did wrong.
Organisations such as local authorities, which place people in care homes, only rely on the grading given by the CQC when putting people in care even though sometimes the quality of the home might be considered marginal. So in order to prevent more death and neglect. They should get more information from GP or maybe district nurses before putting the service users in care as they have a duty undertake regular reviews to make sure people’s needs are being met safely and contractual obligations are being discharged.
3.2 Analyse the effectiveness of policies, procedures and managerial approach within a health and social care setting for promoting the management of risks.
In my care setting there are certain policies and procedures put in place in promoting the management risks, one of them is the whistle blowing policy.
To promote whistle blowing, management makes sure that all the staff members are aware of what whistle blowing is by providing training to professionals and staff members, sending emails to them, giving them policy manuals on induction day and putting posters in the staff room. They also put posters in the reception so that all the family members and visitors can s see it. My manager takes the whistle blowing policy very seriously as she makes sure that all the care staff know what whistle blowing is, how to report it, who and when to report it to in a safe way. Whistle blowing is a way for individuals such as workers to report any wrong doing that they observe taking place. In the care home towards the service users, every whistle blower should be protected against discrimination and also from being fired as their identify is protected. Whistle blowing is something that might be condemned by their colleagues so it might cause some problems if they know whom the whistle blower is as that person might be considered a traitor. The reason why manager makes sure all the care staff are aware of what the policy for whistle blower is, is that by doing so the service users might be protected from harm and abuse as whistle blowing is effective in protecting service users from being abused and neglected from going unnoticed.
In my care setting during induction all the care staff are told the correct policy and procedure. When it comes to an accident in the care setting during the induction everyone is taught what kind of incidents should be reported, how they are reported, why they are reported and how long they keep the records of such incidents. For example if a resident falls, the carer has to immediately call for help in our case the nurse on duty so that she could access the damage suffered by the service user. Then we have 24 hours to report it although it should be reported as soon as possible in case you forget something. By following the policy and procedures put in place by the organization the care staff are doing the best they can to protect the service users. All the care staff is required to access and record risks within the care setting as they are trained to do so and in case they don’t they are required to inform the manager or a senior staff.
When it comes to the complaint policy and procedures the manager takes it as seriously as the whistle blowing procedure as it means the family members are not happy with the service we are offering. For example if there is a complaint about the safeguarding of a resident made by a relative, depending on the severity of the complaint, all the carers that work in the unit the resident stays in will have a meeting with the manager so that she can clarify what happened, who was on duty that they, how we can solve the problem, all the carers in the unit are required to write a statement an measures will be put in place to make sure the family members are satisfied with the outcome although in extreme cases the service users is required to move to another care home if there is no trust between the carers and the family members.
For the manager to manage the risks effectively in my care setting she makes sure that the organization is complying with the relevant legislations and standard of care. She also makes sure that the organization and the care staffs are aware of acceptable and unacceptable risks as we work with elderly residents who suffer from dementia. And because the needs of the residents keep changing risk assessments are updated often to adapt the new needs of the residents. Although all of this is being done some of the service users are deteriorating quickly. For example by losing weight as they usually refuse to eat and this can be dangerous to their health and safety. So to prevent that from happening the residents who are refusing to eat are provided with supplements and other nutritious supplements to make sure they are getting everything they need in order to be healthy.
To make sure the organization is following all the health and safety procedures CQC visits every three or six months. This is to make sure everything is being done to meet the needs of the service users. My managers as a very unique leadership style as whenever she is walking around the care settingshe makes sure to go into every residents rooms to ask them if they are alright or if they need something or just to say hello and have a chat with them as most of them feel lonely. She also does the same with the care staff making sure we are all right and helps if we have any problems, as she is a very understanding person
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