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Safeguarding Adults

On 1 April 2015 the Care Act (DH, 2014) came into force in England, placing adult safeguarding on a statutory footing for the first time.  The statutory guidance within the Care Act enshrines six principles of safeguarding which should inform the ways in which professionals and others work with adults:-

  • ·         Empowerment - supporting and encouraging person-led decisions and informed consent
  • ·         Prevention - it is better to take action before harm occurs
  • ·         Proportionality - least intrusive response, appropriate to level of risk
  • ·         Protection -  support and representation for those in greatest need
  • ·         Partnerships - local solutions through services working with their communities
  • ·         Accountability - accountability and transparency in delivering safeguarding

 The Trust recognises its primary duty is to ensure the safety, well-being and protection of adults experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect in its care and the responsibility of all staff to act promptly on any suspicion, disclosure or evidence of abuse or neglect wherever it occurs. Consequently, within the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, and across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, there are policies and procedures in place for adults who may need safeguarding.  These procedures ensure that the relevant agencies and services work together to prevent abuse,  and to protect the most vulnerable people in our society.

Who is an adult in need of safeguarding?

The Care Act 2014 states that safeguarding duties apply to an adult,  aged 18 years and over, who:-

  • ·         who has care and support needs (whether or not the local authority is meeting any of those needs) and;
  • ·         Is experiencing, or at risk of, abuse or neglect, and;
  • ·         As a result of those care and support needs is unable to protect themselves from either the risk of, or                 experience of abuse and neglect.

 What is Abuse?

Abuse is defined as ‘a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or persons which may result in harm’.

Abuse may be a single act, repeated acts or multiple acts.  It may be an act of neglect or a failure to act. Abuse is about the misuse of the power and control that one person has over another.  Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it.  Abuse may be perpetrated as the result of deliberate intent, negligence or ignorance.  Acts of abuse may constitute a criminal act.

 Abuse can happen anywhere – in a residential or nursing home, in a hospital, at home, at a day centre, in supported housing or in the street. Abuse can be perpetrated by anyone - relatives, partners, friends, care workers, or strangers.

What are the Categories of Abuse?

The Care Act (2014) refers to the following categories of abuse:-

  •           Physical
  • ·         Sexual
  • ·         Psychological / emotional
  • ·         Financial and material
  • ·         Neglect or acts of omission
  • ·         Discriminatory
  • ·         Organisation (previously known as Institutional abuse)
  • ·         Domestic abuse and violence (inc. honour based violence)
  • ·         Modern Slavery (inc. human trafficking, forced labour and domestic servitude)
  • ·         Self-neglect (in. behaviour such as hoarding, neglecting one’s health and surroundings)


 Further details of the categories of abuse, including the signs and indicators of abuse can be found in the Multi-Agency Adult Safeguarding Policy and Procedures which is available at: www.llradultsafeguarding.co.uk

What should you do if you think someone is being abused?

If you are concerned that an adult has been or is being abused outside of a hospital setting you should notify the relevant adult social care department, as below. 

If the person you are concerned about lives in the County please telephone - 0116 305 0004 (office hours, Mon – Fri)

If the person you are concerned about lives in the City please telephone: 0116 252 7004 (office hours Mon – Fri)

If the person you are concerned about lives in Rutland please telephone:- 01572 758 341 (office hours, Mon – Fri) 

For emergencies only, outside of office hours and at weekends and bank holidays, telephone 0116 255 1606 for all areas.

If a crime has been committed and the person is in immediate danger, call 999 and ask for the Police / Ambulance.  If the person is not in immediate danger call the Police on 101.

Or you can contact a helpline such as Action on Elder Abuse - see Adult Protection Links

Concerned about an Adult in Hospital?

If you are concerned about someone who is currently in hospital and you are worried that they may be experiencing abuse whilst on a ward please ask to speak to the Ward Sister/ Manager or Matron in the first instance to discuss your concerns.  Alternatively you can contact the Patient Information and Liaison Service (PILS):-

Free phone line: 08081 788337
Or Email: pils.complaints.compliments@uhl-tr.nhs.uk

Or write to: Patient Information and Liaison Service
The Firs, C/O Glenfield Hospital
Groby Road
Leicester, LE3 9QP

You may also contact the Safeguarding Adults Service:

Telephone: 0116 258 7703 or 0116 258 5446

Email: adultsafeguarding@uhl-tr.nhs.uk


Safeguarding Adults Structure within UHL

Executive Leadership provided by Deputy Chief Nurse

Adult Safeguarding Service

Head of Safeguarding – adults and children, supported by:

Matron Adult Safeguarding

Adult Safeguarding Specialist Nurses

Other links:

Leicestershire & Rutland Domestic Homicide Reviews