Care abuse chiefs face fines

Directors of care homes and hospitals that fail to deliver basic standards will be open to prosecution under new plans being unveiled by the Government. They will also have to pass a "fit and proper" test before being appointed to their roles.

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Measures to restore confidence after care scandals

Today's measures are a response to several recent scandals in both care homes and hospitals.

They include the case of Winterbourne View care home in Bristol where patients with learning difficulties were abused and neglected by staff.

Footage captured by an undercover BBC reporter showing patients being slapped, dragged on the floor and doused in cold water eventually led to 11 staff pleading guilty to 38 charges.

The Francis Report consluded that patients were routinely neglected at Stafford Hospital Credit: PA

Stafford Hospital was also the subject of a damning report by Robert Francis QC which concluded that patients were routinely neglected by staff.

It detailed how patients were left unfed and unwashed, some of them in soiled sheets.

Read: Stafford Hospital report calls for 'zero tolerance' approach to poor care


New measures to crack down on abuse in care system

The government will today announce measures that aim to restore confidence in the care system after a series of scandals, including Winterbourne View and Mid-Staffs.

The measures include:

  • A compulsory 'fit and proper person' test for hospital and care home directors. If they fail the test, they will be removed from their post.
  • Addressing a loophole in the system where providers responsible for appalling failures in care can escape prosecution.
  • Allowing the Care Quality Commission to prosecute providers and their directors without giving prior notice.

Care home directors to be 'held responsible' for abuses

Directors in charge of care homes and hospitals will be held personally accountable for any abuse or neglect under new measures being unveiled today.

Winterbourne View residential hospital in Bristol Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

Care and Support Minister Norman Lamb will say that the changes are designed to prevent a repeat of cases like Winterbourne View, where an undercover reporter revealed shocking abuse at a Bristol care home.

The new standards will require directors to take a "fit and proper" test to ensure they fit the role, and make it easier for the health watchdog to prosecute them where there are clear failures to meet basic standards of care.

The measures will apply to any care provider that is registered under the Care Quality Commission.

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