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This Policy defines the simple procedures and precautions to be taken by Care Staff for the safe use and handling of electrical appliances and equipment at the service user’s home where these are needed to be used to carry out agreed tasks:

1. Electrical equipment in a service user’s home will be restricted to normal household appliances such as kettles, toasters, vacuum cleaners etc. The Care Worker MUST NOT interfere with the electrical mains supply; in the event of power failure refer to Policy No 3706.

2. In the course of normal duties, the Care Worker should check for the following BEFORE using an electrical appliance at the service user’s home:

  • There are no loose wires or cracked plugs.

  • Plugs or sockets are not burnt or unduly discoloured.

  • Electric power points are not overloaded.

  • The appliance appears to be functioning correctly.

3. Where required for safety, RCDs (circuit breakers) must be used in conjunction with an electrical appliance in the home. These are provided by the Organisation for a Care Worker to use in specific instances, and must be used in accordance with appropriate instructions. Refer to Policy No 4007 for the Safe Use of RCDs.

4. On a general safety note, the Care Worker should check for the following:

4.1 There are no electrical appliances in the bathroom (apart from electric razors plugged into appropriate shaver sockets).

4.2 All appliances are switched off and unplugged when not in use. NOTE: Discretion should be used here since this would not include items such as TVs or VCRs where the service user may wish to leave these items on for pre-recording programmes.

5. The service user must be informed of any potential danger with any appliance, and the Service User’s Notes annotated accordingly. The Care Worker retains the right to refuse to use any appliance which appears unsafe, and MUST report such instances to the Domiciliary Care Services Supervisor or Manager.

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