Adult safeguarding: protecting a person’s right to live in safety, free from abuse and neglect
Protection of adults with care and support needs is a multi-agency responsibility. The hospital and its staff work with many partners under the umbrella of the Enfield and Haringey Social Services Safeguarding Adult Boards to promote adult safeguarding and ensure that vulnerable adults, receive protection and support.
Our staff have a duty to identify and report concerns if they suspect an adult is being abused. Further information about local strategies and policies can be found on Enfield and Haringey Councils' websites.
Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm or exploitation of an adult. A wide range of people may harm adults including: staff members, professionals, volunteers, other patients or service users, relatives, friends, neighbours and strangers.
We take our responsibility seriously, and have policies and procedures in place to safeguard patients.
What is abuse?
It is the violation of an individual's human or civil rights by another person or people. It can take many different forms such as:
- Physical abuse - being hit or restrained, misuse of medication
- Sexual abuse - being harassed, teased or being forced to have sex without consent
- Psychological abuse - bullying, threats, verbal abuse
- Financial abuse - theft, fraud, misappropriation of property or possessions, pressure to change a Will
- Neglect - not getting adequate care, food, medication, heating
- Discriminatory abuse - ridicule or threats because of race, gender, disability
- Institutional abuse - mistreatment by an organisation or individual where care is provided
- Forced marriage - forcing someone to marry under duress and unwillingly
- Hate crime - related to being victimised due to discrimination against a person for their ability, race, culture belief, sexual orientation etc.
- Honour-based violence - is a crime and referring to the police must always be considered.
Abuse can be perpetrated by anyone - relatives, partners, friends, neighbours, volunteers, paid care workers, or strangers - and can happen anywhere.
Where does abuse occur?
Abuse can happen in many different settings:
- someone’s own home
- in a care home
- in a hospital
- in a day centre
- in a public place.
What do you need to do?
- recognise it
- abuse comes in many forms and more than one type may be happening at one time
- report it
- if you feel you are being abused or know a person at risk, tell someone. They will work with you to make sure everyone is safe.
- you may be worried about the consequences of reporting abuse. The person concerned may not be able to report the abuse himself or herself and may rely on you to voice concerns. You will be offered advice and support.
- never assume somebody else will recognise and report what you have seen or heard.
What will happen next?
- what happens next depends on the wishes of the person and the seriousness of the situation
- once reported, concerns will be investigated in line with North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust safeguarding adults policy
- investigations will normally be co-ordinated by social services but may be led by the police or by social services
- information / advice will be offered so that the person and their family can make an informed choice about any practical help they need or action they wish to take
- if they are unable to make an informed choice, care will be taken to support and protect them and do what is best for them.
Once reported, the concern will be investigated in line with the trust's safeguarding adult policy and local social services safeguarding procedures. Investigation will normally be co-ordinated by social services but may be led by the police or by social services.
The National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247
Further information about the MARAC can be obtained through: www.caada.org.uk
The guidance contained in the multi-agency practice guidelines, 'Handling cases of forced marriages' (Home Office, 2009), recommends that cases involving forced marriage are best dealt with by child protection or ‘adult protection’ specialists.
Hate crimes are one of the categories of crime investigated by borough Community Safety Units (CSUs). In the Metropolitan Police Service there are 32 such units (one for each authority). The CSUs have specialist hate crime investigators to ensure that victims are fully supported who can be contacted as shown below:
- Enfield Police Community Safety Unit: 020 8345 4355
- Haringey Police Community Safety Unit: 020 8345 1941 (Monday to Friday 8am-6pm; weekends 8am-4pm)
All emergencies, call 999
The trust, Enfield Council and Haringey Council have adopted the London Safeguarding Adults policy and procedures called 'Protecting adults at risk: London multi-agency policy and procedures to safeguarding adults from abuse'. Please refer to the relevant local authority websites below where you will find more information.
Want to know more?
For further information on safeguarding adults issues relating to the trust, contact:
Our executive lead
Deborah Wheeler, director of nursing and midwifery – 020 8887 2564 – or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Safeguarding Adult Team
Safeguarding Adult Team - 020 8887 3949 – or email: northmid.AdultSafeguardingReferrals@nhs.net
Sharon Wilson, safeguarding co-ordinator - 020 8887 3229 – or email email@example.com
Website links to related publications
Protecting adults at risk: London multi-agency policy and procedures to safeguard adults from abuse
The Mental Capacity Act 2005 outlines a statutory framework to empower and protect vulnerable people who are not able to make their own decisions.
The Mental Capacity Act Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (MCA DOLS) safeguards were introduced to ensure that no one is deprived of their liberty in a hospital or care home setting without good reason.
Page last updated:November 2016