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Posted by: on August 12nd, 2012 @ 2:41 PM

Mental Health Medication Concern

Many people with severe mental health problems miss out on the care they should
receive for physical illnesses, researchers say.

A British Journal of Psychiatry paper found those with severe mental illness were less likely to get drugs for conditions such as high blood pressure.

The University of Leicester team reviewed 61 existing studies to reach their conclusions.

Campaigners said patients' physical health was "often overlooked".

The studies analysed by the team covered almost two million people, mainly living in the US.

They looked at treatment of conditions including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis and HIV.

It was found that patients with severe mental illness, such as schizophrenia, received lower than expected prescriptions for essential drugs to treat high blood pressure, including ACE inhibitors, beta-blockers and statins.

Overall, it was estimated that the rate of undertreatment for medical conditions was 10% for those with severe mental illness.

To read the full article, click here.

Posted by: Abby Hough on January 3rd, 2013 @ 11:18 AM

Personalisation 'at high risk of failure', Norman Lamb told

Personalisation is at "high risk of failure" unless bureaucratic council approaches that restrict service users and social workers are overhauled, care services minister Norman Lamb has been warned in an open letter.

The letter comes from some of the organisations that have most fervently championed personal budgets and the opening up of the social care market to increase choice for service users: In Control, Shared Lives Plus, Community Catalysts, Inclusive Neighbourhoods and Inclusion North.

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They said that while research showed how personal budgets could be used to most effectively improve outcomes for service users, many councils were taking the opposite approach.

"We too often find unsuitable systems for resource allocation, burdensome support planning approaches not controlled by people themselves, rigid rules on spend, social workers not trusted to make judgements, people left without information, advice and advocacy, under-developed markets and restrictive preferred provider lists," it said.

Leading advocates of self-directed support warn bureaucracy and lack of trust in people and social workers is derailing personal budgets, in open letter to care services minister.

The letter warned that the next couple of years were "absolutely critical" in determining whether personalisation delivered big improvements for people or became a "tragically missed opportunity". "As things stand there is great potential but a high risk of failure," it added.

It called on Lamb to follow some of the recommendations of the recent review by David Boyle for the Cabinet Office on extending choice and control in public services. These included phasing out preferred provider lists, replacing assessments of need with assessments that took account of people's capabilities and informal resources, and placing a duty on councils to signpost people to independent sources of support on how they could spend their personal budget.

It said implementing Boyle's recommendations could "dramatically" change a situation in which the local delivery of personalisation "too often corrupts its key principles".

Posted by: on May 9th, 2013 @ 08:51 AM

Social Worker Struck Off

Social Worker Struck Off

Concerns about the social worker's practice came to light after a foster carer complained about the lack of support he was receiving.

A social worker who falsified records of visits to a vulnerable child and failed to act on a disclosure of abuse by a young girl with learning disabilities has been struck off.

Emily Coghlan’s failings came to light after a foster carer complained to Swindon council in May 2011 about the lack of social work contact and support he had received in relation to Child TS.

An assistant team manager reviewed Child TS’s file and found the child’s allocated social worker, Coghlan, had filled out notes in relation to a number of visits. But Child TS’s foster carer said these visits had never taken place.

An internal investigation found Coghlan had provided elaborate details of these alleged visits, including actions taken by Child TS’s foster carer and school, none of which were true, a panel of the Health and Care Professions Council’s (HCPC) conduct and competence committee heard.

Coghlan was suspended by the council following the complaint and later dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct.

Three witnesses, including Coghlan’s assistant team manager and team manager, gave evidence at the HCPC’s hearing. Coghlan did not attend and was not represented.

The assistant team manager told the HCPC that, when investigating Coghlan’s behaviour in the case of Child TS, she also discovered that Coghlan had failed to act on a child protection referral made to her concerning a young child with learning disabilities, Child ES.

Child ES had reported issues of past abuse that had occurred when she was in her father’s care, the HCPC’s panel heard.

Coghlan claimed in writing that this disclosure was not as important as suggested and that she would have dealt with it in due time; however, she was then suspended and said she was not given the opportunity to handover any outstanding work.

But the HCPC heard evidence that Coghlan had been asked whether she had any work to handover, and she had failed to mention this case. The panel therefore found this allegation proved.

In both of these cases, Coghlan put vulnerable children at significant risk of harm, the panel found.

She was not newly qualified, but an experienced and fully trained social worker. The panel concluded that it “could not be satisfied in the light of the registrant’s lack of insight into the impact of her failures on vulnerable children that there would not be a continuing potential risk to service users”.

This is the second time this month that a social worker has been struck off after falsifying records about visits to a child.


Another example of our vulnerable people falling foul of unacceptable practices, we like to think that abuse cases are few and far between but this is often not the case. Let’s keep our eyes open people and our documentation accurate.

Reg Storey

Posted In : Training
Posted by: Reg Storey on January 16th, 2014 @ 11:01 AM

Social Care Workers given £8m training boost

Social care workers given £8m training boost

The Welsh government said it wanted to boost the esteem in which social work and care was held in the public eye.

Training for social care workers in Wales has been given a boost with news of an £8m grant.

The money announced by the Welsh government is part of a package worth £11.6m for this financial year.

The social care workforce development programme aims to increase the take-up of training across the whole social care sector.

Great news that the Welsh government have recognised the importance of investing in training - fingers crossed the English government will soon follow suit.  We at Routes Healthcare believe training is so important and continue to invest heavily in our team -Reg Storey Routes Healthcare Training Dept.

Posted In : Training
Posted by: Reg Storey on March 27th, 2014 @ 10:11 AM

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