Under the 1989 and the 2004 Children Acts a child or young person is anyone under the age of 18 years.
Safeguarding Children refers to the activity that is undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering or at risk of suffering significant harm. All agencies and individuals should be proactive in safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.
Swanwood Partnership recognises that all children have a right to protection from abuse and the practice accepts its responsibility to protect and safeguard the welfare of children with whom staff may come into contact.
We are committed to a best practice which safeguards children and young people irrespective of their background, and which recognises that a child may be abused regardless of their age, gender, religious beliefs, racial origin or ethnic identity, culture, class, disability or sexual orientation.
Swanwood Partnership will:
- Respond quickly and appropriately where abuse is suspected or allegations are made
- Provide both parents and children with the chance to raise concerns over their own care or the care of others.
- Have a system for dealing with, escalating and reviewing concerns.
- Remain aware of child protection procedures and maintain links with other bodies, especially the CCG-appointed contacts.
- Ensure that all staff are trained to a level appropriate to their role.
The definition is wide, however this may be regarded as anyone over the age of 18 years who may be unable to protect themselves from abuse, harm or exploitation, which may be by reason of illness, age, mental illness, disability or other types of physical or mental impairment. Those at risk may live alone, be dependent on others (care homes etc.), elderly, or socially isolated.
Where abuse of a vulnerable adult is suspected, the welfare of the patient takes priority. In deciding whether to disclose concerns to a third party or other agency, the GP will assess the risk to the patient. Ideally the matter should be discussed with the patient involved first, and attempts made to obtain consent to refer the matter to the appropriate agency. Where this is not possible, or in the case of emergency where serious harm is to be prevented, the patient’s doctor will balance the need to protect the patient with the duty of confidentiality before deciding whether to refer. The patient should usually be informed that the doctor intends to disclose information, and advice and support should be offered. Where time permits, the medical defence organisation will be telephoned before any action is taken.
Swanwood Partnership will seek consent from vulnerable people to share information with carers / next of kin and log the results of this. Due regard will be taken of the patient’s capacity to provide a valid consent.
Swanwood Partnership will ensure that all staff are trained to a level appropriate to their role.