Explains your rights to social care, and how this differs from healthcare. Includes information on eligibility, needs assessments, financial assessments, and how local authorities may meet your needs.
Safeguarding means protecting your right to live in safety, free from abuse or neglect. Local authorities have duties under the law towards people who are experiencing abuse or neglect (or are at risk of either).
Local authorities have safeguarding duties towards you if you are an adult and:
In these pages we refer to someone to whom the local authority owes safeguarding duties as 'a person at risk'.
Abuse can mean:
Neglect can mean:
If the local authority has good reason to believe you're a person at risk (meaning safeguarding duties apply), and you are in its area, then it must make an enquiry so it can decide what action should be taken.
An enquiry might just be a conversation with you, or it may be a more formal multi-agency investigation. It depends on the circumstances.
The aim of an enquiry is to:
You should be fully involved in the enquiry. If you have difficulty in being involved, then the local authority should appoint an advocate for you.
Once the enquiry has happened, and the local authority knows what your wishes are, there are a number of things that could happen:
All local authorities must have a safeguarding adults board. Its purpose is to:
The board is made up of:
Other people, such as GPs or members of user, advocacy or carers groups can also be invited to attend some meetings.
CCGs are groups of GP practices and other healthcare professionals and bodies that are responsible for commissioning most health and care services for patients. They have replaced Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) in England.See our full list of legal terms.
This information was published in February 2018. We will revise it in 2021.
References are available on request. If you would like to reproduce any of this information, see our page on permissions and licensing.