For several years, since the implementation of the Welsh Assembly Government guidance document 'In Safe Hands (2000)' and the development of the 'South Wales Policy and Procedures for the Protection of Vulnerable Adults from Abuse and Inappropriate Care (2001)' Cardiff and Vale Local Health Board, in partnership with the Local Authorities, Police and Care and Social Services Standards Inspectorate for Wales partners, has responded to cases of alleged abuse/inappropriate care in a systematic way.
The aim of the joint Policy is to ensure that any abuse or inappropriate care when identified or reported is thoroughly investigated and plans developed to assure the vulnerable adult's safety. Following a referral, partner agencies will work together to consider the nature of the alleged abuse/inappropriate care and decide the best response to reduce or eliminate the risk of further significant harm from occurring. As well as addressing more serious cases of abuse via the criminal justice system, the POVA Policy aims to support care-giving situations which are under pressure and where stress or exhaustion may play a factor in 'end of tether' abuse. It is also intended to be used to help eliminate poor practice from within service settings, and to this end staff across the agencies are receiving training to become more 'POVA aware'.
If you are concerned that a vulnerable adult is being abused or subjected to inappropriate care, it is important that you act quickly in order that they can be protected from further significant harm. You can make a referral in several ways. Firstly, by accessing a VA1 referral form from the South Wales Adult Protection Forum website (www.swapforum.org) and sending this to your nearest Local Authority Social Services Mental Health Services for Older People Community Team (see entry) and/or by discussing your concern with the lead officer within that team with POVA Designated Lead Manager responsibility. Next, the following personnel can be contacted for advice and support and to discuss your referral.
Cardiff City Council Protection of Vulnerable Adults Development Officer, Co-ordinators (Lynda Gallagher, Steve Hicks, Steve Bartley) Telephone: 029 2053 6436
Vale of Glamorgan Protection of Vulnerable Project Manager, Lynette Jones, Adults Co-ordinator Telephone: 01446 704740
Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, Telephone: 029 2093 2628.
Note: If you think a vulnerable adult is being seriously harmed or that a criminal act has been committed you should call the Police without delay. Telephone: 029 2022 2111