At the forefront of this, of course, we ensure that the way in which we deliver services is safe, our homes and other environments are fit for purpose, and people have the freedom to take appropriate risks so that they can live their lives in the way they choose.
We follow robust recruitment practices which include DBS (the Disclosure and Barring Service) checks for all staff. We also expect all of our staff to undertake a three month induction plan of training, during which time they are continually assessed to ensure that they're meeting the needs of the people they will be supporting – in terms of the service they provide, as well as their behaviour and attitude. Our core training includes safeguarding, equality and diversity and challenging discrimination. We have a dedicated Learning and Development Team to ensure that all of our staff are kept up-to-date with current best practice in this specialist field.
We have a positive approach to risk-taking and manage the risk of any activity with the person's freedom and emotional wellbeing at the forefront of any risk assessment. In line with Data Protection, we keep and store accurate records of our daily activities for legislative and quality monitoring purposes.
For people who wish to manage their own medicines, we can support this – or, alternatively, we can take on this responsibility. As with all services, an individual's personal plan will be revised over time to give them the optimum amount of independence but with a 'safety net' should the unexpected occur.
Health and safety
Our approach to good health and safety practice is to make sure it's person-centred. Individuals may be affected differently by the same potential cause of harm, so these differences must be considered and managed. We consider how we can support people to stay safe but, at the same time, allow them to take risks and make the most of the choices available. We also safeguard people's health now, and for the future, by helping them to understand how to look after themselves (including making informed lifestyle choices and developing Health Action Plans). We also give our staff support in health and wellbeing, too.
We have an open 'no-blame' culture for reporting and investigating any accident or near miss. This means we can understand what has happened, and prevent accidents reoccurring. We also take all near miss incidents very seriously, as this is our opportunity to take action before an injury occurs and to spot any emerging trends.
Even with the best planning, however, people will sometimes be injured. We have good systems in place to manage the initial event and to reduce any further harm.
We regularly ask people for their consent to receive support and care and this is recorded by staff members on the individual's personal file. We also ask the people we support for their consent on any other issues that may effect their personal lives – and ensure that the circumstances are explained to them in a way that they can understand, so that they can make informed decisions.