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Farron asks Minister to protect older people from abuse

June 26, 2007 12:00 AM

Tim with older personLocal MP, Tim Farron used Health Questions in parliament today to ask the Health Minister Ivan Lewis the Department of Health's opinion on the regulations designed to prevent elder abuse. Mr Farron asked the Minister if in light of a Help the Aged report which claims up to half a million pensioners are being abused, the Department consider the guidelines to be stringent enough to prevent such abuse.

A number of constituents have contacted Mr Farron concerned that the regulatory body, the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) do not have the power to reprimand a care home appropriately if found to be in breach of any of the regulations.

In response to Mr Farron's question about CSCI, the Minister said:

"The report is shocking and there is unfortunately an issue of abuse in care homes. We clearly need solutions to tackle these issues."

After Health Questions, Mr Farron said:

"The regulatory body for conduct in care homes would appear to be completely toothless. If a school was found to be seriously failing, Ofsted would not stand idly by and let it continue, they would come down on the school extremely hard and rightly so.

"We need a system for care homes which is at least as effective as the system for schools, which can be clearly understood by everybody. The procedures need to be laid out in such a way that complainants can see precisely where their case has reached and what the next step will be."