Children's Minister Speaks about Reforms in Residential Child Care
- 25 Jun
The government has revealed a broad range of reforms to fix the country's bad residential child care system.
Children's minister, Edward Timpson said: "Residential child care has been ignored and left to fail for too long."
"He also said that the reforms will lead to a much sharper focus on transparency, a drive for higher quality in children's homes and stricter measures to hold councils and homes to account for the decisions they make when placing children."
He made it clear that children's homes will need to meet higher standards of safety and quality.
A seven-month investigation into children's homes by BBC Panorama discovered that one in four children are placed in homes rated 'inadequate' or 'adequate' by Ofsted, and over half of children in residential care are placed away from their local area.
Edward Timpson alleged that:
"Children's residential care has been ignored for too long, leading to unacceptable failings in the system. We've worked hard over the last year to identify the problems and are now taking strong action to tackle them.
However, children in care should expect the same standards that we would want for our own children. Our reforms will improve the quality of care and tackle the out-of-sight, out-of-mind culture and poor decision making, so vulnerable children are safe.
I'm a strong believer that transparency drives up quality. Our package of reforms will remove the secrecy which has shrouded residential care for too many years -shining a light on where local authorities and care homes can do better."
The government's reforms will implement recommendations.
The following measures were outlined today:
- That new homes should be opened by Ofsted in safe areas and these should be runned by skilled providers; rules should be introduced to this effect.
- The safety of the children in the homes that are already opened in less safe areas should be guaranteed or Ofsted will close them down.
- The staff that work in childrens' homes should achieve minimum qualifications.
- Except where it involves risk identifying children, the full inspection of children as well as ownership should be published.
- Homes must also clearly indicate what they need to be provided so that the childrens needs may appropriately met.
- Rules should be introduced so that homes can tell councils when to move in or out of the area.
Out-of-area placements will only be subject to an approval by a senior council official.
Ofsted's chief inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw, said:
Ofsted welcomed the new procedures, including those "which will strengthen our ability to drive up standards in children's homes and act against poor performing providers to help keep these young people safe".
Later this summer, the government will circulate additional data and analysis on the whereabout and quality of care homes, and how children are placed in councils.
These will be used to harness the progress of authorities on choosing and paying for places in children's homes, and inspire them to find more local placements.
"From September, Ofsted will inspect local authorities' performance to examine how they are meeting the statutory requirements to reduce the number of children who go missing from care."
Image source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/832858
- 25 May
CARE HAS IMPROVED CONSIDERABLY IN ENGLAND
Almost three fourth of 372 care homes rated inadequate in 2014 and still operating have improved.205 care homes have improved from a low rating to requiring improvement, 68 are now rated good and 99...
- 24 May
NHS ADJUSTMENTS TO BUDGET CUTS
NHS trusts which have been previously rated good or outstanding will not be inspected as frequently as before, but those rated as inadequate will be regularly visited by the CQC.The Guardian reports...
- 19 Mar
Government to inspect if housing can reduce NHS costs
In the Budget document the government have said it's looking at the ‘cost-effectiveness of options to integrate spending around some of the most vulnerable groups of people.' This includes...
- 15 Oct
End of life patients are lacking support
The charity has found that almost 92% of NHS clinical commissioning groups do not provide round the clock telephone helplines, reports the BBC.Guidelines say there should be 24-hour telephone...
- 15 Sep
Social care is being limited due to council cuts
ADASS are warning that cuts are making the care system "unsustainable" with charities saying hundreds of thousands of people are struggling without help, even though the government says councils have...
- 17 Jul
Young people should not be placed in B&Bs says MPs
The Commons Education Select Committee has said that B&B accommodation is "threatening and frightening" and should only be used in emergency situations reports the BBC.MPs say that young people...
- 16 Jul
Special measures system designed to improve failing care homes
A scheme similar to special measures of hospitals will be introduced for care homes and home care agencies next year, ministers will say, reports the BBC.This will cover 25,000 services and could...
- 14 Jul
Research says that one in three Alzheimer's cases can be prevented
The research says that the main risk factors of Alzheimer's is lack of exercise, smoking, depression and poor education, reports the BBC. Alzheimer's Research UK said age was still the biggest risk...
- 10 Jul
NHS boss says those with vulnerabilities need joint health and care budget
Simon Stevens wants to see older people, those with disabilities and people with serious mental health problems given joint pots from the NHS and council-run social care services, reports the...
- 17 Jun
Council falters in reviewing autistic man’s care plan
According to Community Care:"The ruling was made by the Local Government Ombudsman after the man's mother complained that his physical and mental health deteriorated in the two-year period after...
Revenue Optimisation "We really appreciate the work that Support Solutions did for Home Group in securing significant additional revenue for our supported housing schemes. This really will make a positive difference to the way in which we support our vulnerable tenants". Dave Coope - Home Group