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Good practice guidance for professionals

Professionals working in social care, healthcare, police, the voluntary sector, probation, housing, adult education, fire service, prisons and approved premises, commissioned providers and Job Centre Plus are all expected to have a sound knowledge of safeguarding adults.

A sound knowledge of safeguarding adults includes:

  • being able to recognise and report abuse and neglect
  • co-operating with all types of safeguarding enquiries and police investigations
  • taking part in safeguarding enquiries under Section 42 of the Care Act 2014

The County Durham Inter Agency Policies, procedures and forms meet the requirements of the Care Act and the Care and Support Statutory Guidance which was updated on 2 March 2020. We also keep up to date with good practice guidance from organisations such as Social Care Institute of Excellence (SCIE) and Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS).

The policies and procedures ensure that relevant organisations and services work together to prevent abuse and neglect, and support adults who may have been abused or neglected.  Training is also identified to ensure these requirements are adhered to.

Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE)

SCIE improves the lives of people who use care services by sharing knowledge about what works. Their resources, training and consultancy services can help safeguarding boards, care providers, housing providers and local authorities to protect children and adults at risk of abuse or neglect.

NHS England Safeguarding app

The NHS Safeguarding app supports frontline staff and citizens with 24-hour mobile access to up to date safeguarding guidance and local contacts to report safeguarding concerns.  Download the free safeguarding app from your app store.

To find out more visit the NHS website: 

Information Sharing 

The multi-agency safeguarding partnerships in County Durham recognise the importance of sharing relevant and proportionate information to safeguard adults. Sometimes practitioners can lack confidence about when they should share information and whether they need consent to do so.

Most Safeguarding Adults Reviews (SARs) and Serious Case Reviews find that there was a lack of information sharing.

County Durham SAB has produced an updated Information Sharing Agreement to help provide clarity about when and where the information can be shared and in what circumstances consent may be required.

County Durham SAB has revised the Good Practice Toolkit on Collaborative Working and Information Sharing between Professionals to protect Adults, to accompany the Information Sharing Agreement drawn up between the LSAB partners.

Duty of Candour

Duty of Candour is a legal duty on NHS bodies, adult social care, primary, medical and dental care, independent healthcare and all provider organisations registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to support, inform and apologise to patients and service users if there have been mistakes in their care or treatment that have led to moderate harm.  The CQC has provided guidance:

Self-neglect and adult safeguarding

Self-neglect is a type of abuse recognised in the Care and Support Statutory Guidance and is never a lifestyle choice.  A SAB briefing has been developed to share guidance and messages.

Hoarding and Self-neglect

Domestic abuse and safeguarding adults

Domestic violence and abuse is carried out by partners, ex-partners, and family members, and is a type of abuse recognised in the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.  A SAB briefing has been developed to share guidance and messages.

Honour-based violence, Forced marriage and Female genital mutilation (FGM)

A guidance document has been developed by the Safeguarding Adults Board in conjunction with the Safe Durham Partnership and the Durham Safeguarding Children Partnership to help raise awareness of honour based violence, forced marriage and FGM and to provide guidance.

Sexual Exploitation

A guidance document has been developed jointly with Darlington Safeguarding Partnership to help raise awareness of sexual exploitation and provide information on how to report it if you suspect someone is being exploited.

Modern Slavery

Modern slavery is a type of abuse recognised in the Care and Support Statutory Guidance.  A reference guide is available to help identify modern slavery, and with information about processes in place to help people.  If you suspect that modern Slavery is taking place call the Modern Slavery helpline or the police - do not confront the trafficking gang yourself.

Modern Slavery Helpline: 0800 0121 700

Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) have published: