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Elder abuse continues

New information collected by the Care Commission in Scotland suggest that elderly residents in up to 200 care homes may be given medication without their consent.

“These new figures from Scotland are cause for great concern and are a reminder that widespread abuse of the most vulnerable members of our society continues, largely unchecked. Medicating people without their consent can easily lead to elderly people receiving inappropriate drugs or being medicated to make them easier to manage,”

“I have raised this issue over a number of years and I am concerned that this practice continues. I have written to the Department of Health for their comments on this data and for their observations about the situation in homes elsewhere in the United Kingdom.” (see below)

“While many homes are run in an exemplary manner with dedicated, hard-working staff, this hidden abuse of people, whose voices go largely unheard, cannot be allowed to continue.”

Liam Byrne MP Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Department of Health

Dear Liam

Medication in care homes

The Care Commission in Scotland has recently published research into the use of medication in care homes in Scotland. The findings have raised a number of concerns about whether consent is being sought from elderly residents and if medication is being used inappropriately as a ‘chemical cosh.’

The data released by the Care Commission suggests that as many as 200 homes in Scotland could be administering drugs covertly. I have been campaigning for greater transparency in care homes and for measures to end the inappropriate use of medicines for a long time and I would be grateful for your comments on this data and for your observations on this issue in the rest of the UK.

Yours sincerely,

Paul Flynn