Merton rated good on protecting vulnerable adults

A report carried out by the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) has given Merton a positive rating for its work on protecting vulnerable adults.

Merton is one of just three London Boroughs to get a ‘Good’* rating for safeguarding vulnerable adults in this round of inspections.

The inspection took place in February this year as part of a programme of similar inspections across the country to check how vulnerable adults are safeguarded from potential abuse or exploitation. The inspectors also looked at how well services for older people are delivered to meet their individual needs and assessed the council’s capacity to further improve its performance in these areas.

The report rated the delivery of personalised services for older people in Merton as “adequate” and concluded that due to strong leadership the council’s capacity to improve its performance in these areas was “promising”. The report included 21 recommendations and Merton Council’s Cabinet has endorsed an action plan based on these recommendations.

The inspectors found that Merton Council’s safeguarding of vulnerable adults had improved since the last inspection in 2006. This was largely due to effective management and joined up working between the council, the NHS, the police and voluntary sector organisations. It was also due to the work the council had done in developing and training its staff and raising awareness of abuse: what it is, the signs and symptoms and how to report it. The report also noted that the council had resourced a 24-hour helpline manned by trained staff to encourage reporting of, and early response to vulnerable adult cases.

Cabinet member for Housing, Adult Care and Health, Councillor Linda Scott said:

“Protecting vulnerable adults is a top priority for Merton Council as is providing the best possible services. We welcome the CSCI findings and have an action plan to further improve delivery of services. We are determined to provide value for money services that meet the needs of the community and help residents live fulfilled, independent lives.”

During their visit, the inspectors met with older people and their carers, staff and managers from the council and from partner agencies, including the NHS, the police and voluntary sector organisations. They also surveyed service staff, service users and carers and analysed statistical data on the council’s performance.

Notes To Editors:
– The Commission for Social Inspection (CSCI) is an independent body but set up by the Government to promote improvements in social care and stamp out bad practice.

– *The Commission rates council performance using four grades. These are: poor, adequate, good and excellent.

– You can view Merton’s Adults Safeguarding and Older Peoples Services report on http://www.csci.org.uk