The Mental Capacity Act 2005 was amended to provide safeguards for people who lack capacity specifically to consent to treatment or care in either a hospital or a registered care home and where, in their own best interests, the care that is deemed necessary for their health and well being can only be provided in circumstances that amount to a deprivation of liberty. The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) provides a legal framework for the assessment and management of these complex situations.
This flip reverse workbook on the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards has been designed and developed by the National Centre for Post-Qualifying Social Work at Bournemouth University in partnership with Learn to Care, the professional association of workforce development managers in local authorities.
Quote from Lucy Bonnerjea, Mental Capacity and DOLS Lead, Department of Health
We as the Department of Health are very aware that the population entitled to social care now and in the future is changing very rapidly; We estimate that some 70% of those supported in the community and some 80% supported in residential care need to be assisted under the Mental Capacity Act, with a good understanding of case law, of best interests decision making, about the importance of autonomy and liberty. We think this means that the MCA has to play a much larger role in the future of social care than it does today.
This has big implications for training, for supervision, for leadership and for the strategic direction of social care. The question is whether a local authority and others recognises that mental capacity skills are at the heart of all social work and whether there is sufficient leadership to move the authority from the place where some people understand the MCA and most do not, to a situation where no one is allowed to practice social work without a thorough understanding of this framework. This may mean investing in senior practitioners with MCA expertise, carrying out regular MCA audits to identify where additional training is needed, it may mean that all social workers should be trained as BIAs and senior leadership is needed to set a direction and vision where MCA is the bread and butter of social work.
Mike Lyne, the lecturer of the Best Interest Assessor Programme here at the National Centre has written a response to monitoring the use of the Mental Capacity Act Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards in 2011/2012 by the Care Quality Commission and questioned what implication this will have for workforce development managers. You can download this below.
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