Doncaster council’s adult care report rap

NEWS: News.
NEWS: News.

Doncaster Council has been ranked one of the worst authorities in the country for complaints about its adult social care services, according to a new report.

The new report by the Local Government Ombudsman revealed the eighth highest amount of complaints referred to the Ombudsman about adult social health care provided by a local authority were made about Doncaster Council - a total of 25.

The local authorities were ranked based on the total number of complaints made as well as the number per 100,000 people in that location, and Doncaster received 8.27 complaints per 100,000 people.

It also had the highest amount in Yorkshire.

Dr Jane Martin, of the Local Government Ombudsman, said of the report: “Our complaints data suggests there is more to do to provide assurance about complaints handling. Over the last few years there have been a number of reviews that have looked at healthcare complaints.

“We must not wait for a crisis in adult care to examine more closely the way social care commissioners and providers deal with complaints.

“By publishing these statistics, I hope to encourage care providers to scrutinise their approach to ensure the public are given a complaints process that is easy to access, effective and accountable.”

But Doncaster Council claims the data is misleading, due to the fact 64 per cent of the complaints referred to in the report relate to unpopular changes to the national blue badge disabled parking scheme.

The council says only nine of the complaints made referred to care of elderly or vulnerable adults, four of which were upheld.

Joan Beck, the council’s director of adults and communities, said: “The report speaks of adult social care complaints, but in Doncaster’s case well over half of those quoted had nothing to do with social work.

“To artificially inflate complaints against this council will cause needless concern for vulnerable people and their families in Doncaster - it’s unwelcome and unnecessary.

“We always welcome outside scrutiny, but let’s look at the facts.

“Overall we have actually seen a 56 per cent decrease in adult social care complaints received via the Ombudsman in the past year.”