This Policy defines the Organisation’s philosophies regarding the withdrawal of the Domiciliary Care Service from a service user, the conditions under which this may occur, and the appropriate procedures to be followed:
1. Policy No 1003 clearly states those elements of care and professional behaviour that the service user may expect from the Organisation’s Care Service. Also, the Organisation fully respects the right of a service user to live in his / her home in the conditions they choose. Where the service user’s health or safety is considered to be compromised then Care Staff retain the right to bring this to the attention of both the service user and the Organisation’s management. However, set against this is the right of the Organisation’s Care Staff to be able to undertake their duties without undue hazard or threat to themselves in the form of intimidation, violence or other threat to their general health, safety and well-being within the service user’s home environment. This will refer to the following scenarios:
1.1 Abuse, aggression, harassment or actual bodily violence from a service user or relative / family member. Policy No 4103 refers.
1.2 Attack by a dangerous pet. Policy No 4202 refers.
1.3 Working in a home environment infested with pests or vermin. Policy No 4203 refers.
2. In these respects the following preliminary action will be taken:
2.1 Where a staff member has been subjected to unacceptable behaviour from a service user, or has been attacked by a pet, this will be noted in the Service User’s Records and reported back to the Domiciliary Care Services Supervisor or Manager. The service user, or advocate / family member, will be advised of the incident and requested that appropriate action be taken to avoid a recurrence of the incident.
2.2 If there is further abuse or violence, the service user / advocate / family member will be advised that the Organisation may exercise its right to withdraw from providing care to the service user. All such instances and warnings to the service user will be fully documented in the Service User’s Records.
2.3 Similarly, with respect to Policy No 4203 regarding the infestation of a service user’s home by pests or vermin, the service user would be expected to take the necessary action to eliminate the infestation, and the Organisation would provide all assistance in this respect. The service user is advised that the Care Service could be withdrawn unless such positive action is taken to address the problem.
3. There is also the scenario where a Care Worker arrives at the service user’s home but is unable to gain access because the service user is out and has not notified the Domiciliary Care Services Manager. This is one of the reasons for a Wasted Journey (Policy No 1105 refers). Where this becomes a regular occurrence this may lead to the Organisation withdrawing the Care Service from the service user.
4. Where service withdrawal is likely, the Domiciliary Care Services Supervisor or Manager will inform the Contracting Authority accordingly to enable contingency measures to be put into place to guarantee continuity of care for the service user.
5. Service withdrawal is seen as the ultimate sanction, and will only be exercised when all other avenues for resolving the problem with the service user have been exhausted. However, it is recognised that the Organisation has ultimate responsibility for safeguarding the health and safety of its staff. All actions leading to withdrawal of the Care Service will be fully documented in the Service User’s Records and countersigned by the Domiciliary Care Services Supervisor or Manager.