CSSWI Annual Report: ‘Involving People Leads To Safer Care’

The annual report for 2012-13 was launched by Chief Inspector, Imelda Richardson during the first meeting of the CSSIW new National Advisory Board.

Involving people in regulation and inspection of care leads to safer and better services says Imelda Richardson, Chief Inspector of Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW). Launching the annual report for 2012-13 during first meeting of CSSIW’s new National Advisory Board, she said that working in partnership with the public is crucial to improving care.

CSSIW have prioritised the importance of responding to concerns about services as they can act as an effective early warning system for emerging problems. As a result there has been an increase in people reporting concerns, some which have resulted in inspections, especially if the information suggested that people using a service were at risk of harm. The most common causes for concern were neglect of service users, protection and physical abuse of service users, concerns about the behaviour and attitude of management, concerns about the competency and training of staff.

In 2013 CSSIW published its Participation Plan outlining how it would involve people in its work and the annual report documents progress in implementing the plan. CSSIW has established a National Advisory Board bringing together people who have experienced services, people providing services, people who commission services and a range of voluntary and advocacy organisations in advising and directing its work. CSSIW also worked with two voluntary organisations to pilot an ‘independent visitor’ scheme in homes for older people and people who use learning disabilities in west Wales.

People were recruited and supported by Age Cymru and the All Wales Forum to go into homes to talk and listen to people using services, carers, staff and managers, independently of CSSIW inspectors. A similar pilot in children’s homes will take place in 2014, after which CSSIW will look to develop a sustainable scheme to roll-out nationally.