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Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council (20 003 362)

Category : Adult care services > Residential care

Decision : Upheld

Decision date : 07 Jul 2021

Summary: Mr X complained about the actions of a council commissioned domiciliary care company which led to his mother falling and the Council’s role in his mother’s move to a residential care home.

Finding

The Ombudsman upheld the complaint and found fault causing injustice.

Recommendations

Within three months of the date of this report the Council should apologise to Mr X and refund the top-up fees he has paid since his mother, Mrs Y entered care home B.

Within three months of the date of this report the Council should also:

  • review its procedures to ensure people are always offered an available care home placement within their personal budget and that this is detailed in the Council’s records; and
  • review all those who entered Council funded residential care since January 2020 who pay top-ups, to see if any refunds are due to customers who were not offered an alternative care home, with a place available at the time, that did not require a top-up.
  • We recommend that in the six months following the issue of this report, if the Council gets complaints from families who were not offered an available care home placement within their personal budget, going back to the date of our previous report in 2017, then it should apply the same principles as in this case.
  • The Council has accepted our recommendations to remedy the complaint. It has also volunteered to make further improvements to its service, including staff training and procedural changes, which we welcome.
  • The Council should provide us with evidence of the action it has taken.

Ombudsman satisfied with Council's response: 15 November 2021.

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