James Allen, CEO of National Care Group, has voiced his opinion that there is still a long way to go in improving standards in the health and social care sector 10 years on from the infamous Winterbourne View scandal of 2011.
The scandal was the subject of a BBC Panorama investigation that brought to light the many abuses, both physical and psychological, that were inflicted on the patients with learning disabilities at the facility near Bristol.
The hospital was subsequently shut down and arrests were made.
Now, the UK Government’s Health and Social Care Committee has released a report on the treatment of autistic people and people with learning disabilities throughout the sector.
The report “shows a renewed effort across the sector is absolutely essential to make improvements in the support available for individuals, once and for all,” argued Allen.
He continued: “The Winterbourne View abuse scandal was a terrible failing on many parts and lessons should have been learnt across the sector. One key priority is ensuring services are developed in a person-centred and transparent manner.
“This can be achieved and maintained by involving all stakeholders in discussions about the type of services required, committing resources and making timely and sustained planning.”
He went on: “The independent sector can continue its important role in developing and delivering a range of community-based supports for autistic people and people with a learning disability, by supporting the future development of the much-needed services identified within the report.
“Working in partnership would also ensure a full range of community support is available, while providing confidence that everyone involved has the same values and sense of purpose.
“National Care Group would welcome the opportunity to explore options with commissioners to ensure that services are planned effectively and in a manner that will guarantee the right support is offered to individuals.
“Now, more than ever, we need to find a way to deliver on earlier promises and make a difference to the lives of so many people.”