Fewer safeguarding concerns in care homes than own homes, report finds

Care homes cause fewer adult safeguarding concerns than an individual’s own home, NHS safeguarding data for 2017-18 shows.

In the annual report, care homes accounted for just over a third (35.6 per cent) of all safeguarding enquiries made by local authorities in England during the year, compared to an individual’s own home, which accounted for 43.5 per cent of all enquiries.

The NHS Digital report, Safeguarding Adults England, 2017-18, shows that, regionally, London care homes attract fewer than the average number of safeguarding enquiries, and a higher than average number of enquiries made in the person’s own home.

Conversely, Yorkshire and The Humber regions have a greater proportion of safeguarding enquiries, compared to those made in a person’s own home.

The report finds that the greatest source of risk is classed as one ‘known to the individual’, accounting for just over half 50.8 per cent of all risks. This is an increase compared to previous years, due to changes in reporting. Service providers are the next largest source of risk (33.7 per cent), mostly categorised as neglect and acts of omission, and as organisational abuse.  

In total, 394,655 concerns of abuse were raised during 2017-18, an increase of 8.2 per cent on the previous year.  The number of Section 42 enquiries that commenced during the year fell by 1.1 per cent to 131,860 and involved 107,550 individuals. According to NHS Digital one in every 43 adults aged 85 and above were subject to a Section 42 enquiry during 2017-18, compared to one in every 862 adults aged 18-64.

The most common type of risk in Section 42 enquiry is neglect and acts of omission, which accounted for 32.1 per cent of risks during 2017-18.

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