Bridgewater’s safeguarding team is fully committed to make certain that there are good outcomes for adults at risk, children and young people by ensuring that their needs remain paramount and that their wishes and feelings are heard and taken into account by health professionals.
The safeguarding team ensure that employees are equipped with knowledge and skills and are supported through safeguarding supervision and training to enable the organisation to fulfil its statutory duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of the adult at risk, children, young people and unborn children in all areas of service provision.
Systems and processes are in place to enable all staff to know what to do if they suspect or identify abuse or neglect of a child or young person.
The team seek to promote positive outcomes for adults at risk, children and young people by early identification of safeguarding issues and timely intervention when appropriate.
The Safeguarding Business Continuity Plan provides contingency plans in the event of any disruptions to service.
Our Safeguarding Strategy sets out the overarching values and direction of adult and children’s safeguarding and the expectations around our approach and commitment to keeping children and adults at risk, safe.
Our team work to ensure The Voice of the Child or the Adult at Risk is at the centre of our policies and processes.
DBS checks are completed before staff commence working for our Organisation; this process is the responsibility of and carried out by HR.
Safeguarding Children and Safeguarding Adults at Risk, Policies and Guidelines are up to date, robust and easily accessible for all staff on the staff intranet.
Policies and Guidelines are reviewed regularly and updated to reflect national legislation and national and local guidance including those from the Multi Agency Safeguarding Arrangements (MASA)/Safeguarding Partnerships and local Safeguarding Adult Boards.
The voice of the child / adult at risk is at the centre of policy and processes.
There is a Training Strategy and a Training Needs Analysis in place, reflecting the Intercollegiate Documents for Adults, 2018, Children, 2019 and Looked after Children 2015.
All staff are required to undertake mandatory training for safeguarding children and safeguarding adults.
Compliance against safeguarding children and adults training is reported on a monthly basis and monitored by the Safeguarding Named Professionals and Clinical Managers to ensure and promote compliance.
Named Professionals are clear about their role and there are specific job descriptions in place. Safeguarding supervision is provided to Bridgewater staff by the safeguarding team and the Designated Nurses for children and adults safeguarding in the Clinical Commissioning Groups provide safeguarding supervision to the Named Nurses.
The Chief Nurse is the Board Executive Lead for Safeguarding and there is an identified NED (Non-Executive Director) for Safeguarding.
The Safeguarding Service and team are led by the Director for Safeguarding and supported by the Head of Safeguarding, Adult Safeguarding Lead, Named Nurses for Safeguarding + Looked after Children and the Named Midwife.
The Safeguarding Teams Assurance Group (STAG) provides strategic and operational direction in relation to safeguarding and in line with national, regional and local guidance.
STAG has membership from each borough within Bridgewater so that information can be relayed to ensure there is a safeguarding thread throughout our organisation.
The Trust Board receives assurance via the Quality + Safety Committee and the Risk Management Council, where safeguarding risks, quarterly and annual reports and escalated concerns are received.
Working closely with our partner agencies is essential in the safeguarding arena.
The safeguarding team play an active role with reviews such as Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews (Serious Case Reviews) and Domestic Homicide Reviews which have been commissioned by the MASA and SABs.
Previous Ofsted/CQC inspections found evidence of strong partnership working in the majority of boroughs.
Audits are carried out on a regular basis and are significant in the assessment of the Trust and the Trust’s compliance with Section 11 of the Children Act 2004.
A review of safeguarding arrangements was undertaken in March 2019 in accordance with the Trust’s 2018/19 Internal Audit Plan with MIAA, and was awarded a Substantial Assurance opinion.
The overall objective of this review was to assess the systems and processes in place across our organisation with regard to safeguarding vulnerable adults and children.
The Trust Board is assured that;
- The Trust has met its safeguarding responsibilities, specified under Section 11 of The Children Act (2004)
- Regular safeguarding audits are carried out which provides the Board with assurance that safeguarding systems and processes are effective
- The TNA and Training Strategy is in place to ensure those working with adults and children complete mandated training and access safeguarding supervision relevant to their roles on safeguarding children and adults at risk
- Named Professionals for safeguarding are clear about their roles and responsibilities
- The safeguarding team is actively involved in partnership working with each boroughs Local Authorities and partner agencies to safeguard and protect adults and children
On the basis of this work, Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust confirms it has considered its position in regard to safeguarding children and adults and has assurance that it is meeting requirements and is following good practice.