Vulnerable People Still receiving just 15 Minute Care Visits

 18th Mar 2016

People living with mental health illnesses and learning disabilities as well as the elderly may be less independent and more reliant on the help of others in order to complete day-to-day tasks.

This is a perfectly normal occurrence in modern society and many people are cared for by friends, family or even dedicated organisations.

In order to provide those in need with a sufficient level of support, carers must be allowed to spend an appropriate amount of time with them so that they are able to assist with cleaning, cooking and other domestic tasks as well as engage in conversation with residents.

Unfortunately, this is often not the case, as many vulnerable people are being allocated just 15 minutes per carer visit from the vast majority of council-run schemes – a far cry from the 30 minute appointment time recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence.

Insufficient Time

The incredibly short length of these home visits is simply not enough to provide adequate care to those in need of it most, with many support workers stating their timescales prevent them from even having basic, friendly communication with the people they care for.

This issue is now known to affect not only the elderly but also severely ill and disabled people of all ages who require home care services on a regular basis.

In addition, carers are also expected to regularly conduct an unreasonable number of tasks during their working hours. This makes it incredibly hard to complete their work and can often lead to unwanted compromises having to be made.

Furthermore, a recent report issued by Unison (a union comprised largely of care workers) detailed how it was particularly disconcerting that over 60% of care workers claimed shorter visits caused them to rush sessions provided to people over the age of 90.

This issue has come to light after a ‘Freedom of Information request’ was issued to 152 social care councils in England and has since discovered that 74% of these were limiting sessions to the aforementioned 15 minutes.

No Change

To make matters worse, there has been no comparative improvement either, as the request’s findings dictate there has been no change from last year’s figures. Rather worryingly, this seems to suggest the government’s recent crackdown on the quality of care in England was unsuccessful.

Although there are many factors to consider, the severe decline in duration of care visits is likely a result of the substantial budgetary reductions imposed by the government where, in June 2015, £1bn of cuts were planned for the care industry.

Successful care work requires involvement in numerous areas of a person’s life including meal preparation, conversation, physical support, assessment and many more.

Encompass are proud to prioritise the satisfaction and wellbeing of our service users at all times. To this end as an organisation we will not undertake short visits of this duration.

We believe in providing a bespoke service for the people we support, this means the employment of dedicated support staff to ensure consistency and the development of a good rapport, a truly person centred support plan that fully involves the individual .

Our person-centred approach to care and support work allows us to improve the lives of hundreds of people in the Dorset area, with services including Supported Living, Respite Care, Day Care Support and more.

Find out how our team can help you or a loved one by clicking here.

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