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Safeguarding Adults

The Care Act (DH, 2014) governs the work around adult safeguarding.  The statutory guidance within the Care Act enshrines six principles of safeguarding which should inform the ways in which we all 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

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 whom:

  • 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 in adult safeguarding?

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 (Inc. 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.

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

We also have a Trust wide adult safeguarding service which consists of a Head of Safeguarding, adult safeguarding nurses and a Named Doctor. You may contact the Safeguarding Adults team on:

Telephone: 0116 258 7703 or 0116 258 5446

Email: adultsafeguarding@uhl-tr.nhs.uk