Lack of support from Bedford Borough Council and East London NHS Trust 'most likely' impacted resident's wellbeing

Bedford Borough CouncilBedford Borough Council
Bedford Borough Council
That’s according to a ruling from the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman

A lack of support from Bedford Borough Council and East London NHS Foundation Trust “most likely” impacted on a resident’s wellbeing, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman said in a recent ruling.

The Ombudsman said the resident’s sensory, mental health, social care, and communication needs were not met.

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Also, the council also caused uncertainty for his mother by not offering her a carer’s assessment after June 2020.

The Ombudsman looks at individual complaints about councils, all adult social care providers (including care homes and home care agencies) and some other organisations providing local public services.

The published ruling (20 012 449) said the resident is autistic and has complex mental health issues. His mother complained to the Ombudsman about the care and support that the council and the Trust provided to her son during 2020.

Her complaints included a lack of services to support her son’s complex needs, a lack of understanding of her son’s conditions, discharging her son to an unsuitable rehabilitation facility in June 2020, and a lack of support from the council to her as her son’s carer.

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She added that her son’s mental health deteriorated during 2020 and she had to pay for private therapy due to the lack of support.

By contacting the Ombudsman, the mother wanted the council and Trust to put appropriate support and therapy in place and for staff to better understand how to support people like her son.

She also wanted to be reimbursed for the costs of the private therapy.

Following an investigation, the Ombudsman found fault with the council and the Trust’s care and support to the mother and her son.

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Following the Ombudsman’s investigation, which found fault with the care and support offered, the council and trust agreed to carry out actions to remedy the personal injustice suffered by the mother and son, and potentially to others.

The Ombudsman said the council and trust should “jointly apologise to [the resident] and pay £1,000 for the uncertainty caused by not developing a formal care plan to support his needs or meeting his communication needs (related to his autism) during 2020”.

The council was also told to pay an additional £800 in compensation to be shared between the resident and his mother.

The trust was instructed to pay an additional £1,600.

A Bedford Borough Council spokesperson, said: “We acknowledge the findings in this complex case as well as any areas which caused uncertainty or negative impact to individuals.

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“Bedford Borough Council had provided extensive support in this case before referring to specialist partners in East London NHS Foundation Trust.

“A carers assessment which was missed has been rectified.

“The case remains a high priority for both ELFT and the Local Authority.

“ELFT continue to work very closely with the family and are in regular contact with us providing assurance that appropriate care and support is offered to the family.”

ELFT was approached for a comment.