Care Homes: CCTV:Written question - 20518

Q
Asked by Andrew Gwynne
(Denton and Reddish)
Asked on: 16 December 2015
Department of Health
Care Homes: CCTV
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his Department's policy is on the introduction of CCTV in private care homes.
A
Answered by: Alistair Burt
Answered on: 05 January 2016

The abuse or neglect of vulnerable people is deplorable. We have strengthened the powers of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to prosecute providers for unacceptable care, including abuse.


The Government believes strongly that closed circuit television (CCTV) should not be regarded as a substitute for proper recruitment procedures, training, management and support of care staff, or for ensuring that numbers of staff on duty are sufficient to meet the needs of users of services.


It is a legal requirement that care providers must ensure that the safety, welfare, privacy and dignity of service users at all times. The Government considers that the widespread introduction of CCTV into care homes would raise important concerns about privacy, as well as practicality.


The use of CCTV and other forms of covert surveillance should not be routine, but should be considered on a case by case basis. The Department does not object to the use of CCTV in individual care homes or by the families of residents, provided it is done in consultation with and with the permission of those residents and their families.


The CQC has published guidance for care homes and the families of residents on the issues that should be taken into account when deciding whether or not to use CCTV or other forms of covert surveillance. The guidance is available on CQC’s website at:


http://www.cqc.org.uk/content/using-surveillance-information-service-providers

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