A joint inspection of adult support and protection measures in East Ayrshire has found clear strengths in ensuring adults at risk of harm are safe, protected and supported.   

However, inspectors also identified areas which could further improve.  

Inspectors from the Care Inspectorate, Healthcare Improvement Scotland and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary in Scotland carried out an inspection in East Ayrshire between March 2021 and June 2021. 

This was part of a new series of inspections being carried out across Scotland.  

They intend to provide assurance about local partnership areas’ effective operation of adult support and protection processes, and leadership for adult support and protection services. Inspectors looked at health, police, and social work records of adults at risk of harm.  

In the report of the inspection, published today, inspectors say they found that adults at risk of harm were safer as a result of the collaborative support and protection they received.    

Adult support and protection was a partnership priority, and leaders had a clear and cohesive vision which was well articulated in key strategic documents.    

Staff from across the partnership had a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities in relation to adult support and protection. This was well supported by an established learning and development framework.  

Collaborative working between key strategic partners, including the third and independent sector and the wider community, was strong.  The partnership had a well-developed approach to early intervention that had strengthened community resilience.  

Dedicated senior posts, directly accountable to members of the chief officer's group, supported the development and oversight of adult support and protection.    

Inspectors also identified key areas for improvement, including that the partnership should improve the practice of using chronologies in adult support and protection work.  

The report recommended that the partnership should review the role and function of the social work Adult Concern Initial Response Team (ACIRT) and  senior managers should ensure compliance with guidance for protection planning meetings, case conferences, and protection plans.  

It was also reported that improved communication between strategic leads and frontline staff across key partners will support better understanding and application of policy, procedures, and change management.  

The inspection also found that the partnership quality assurance framework was limited and did not accurately reflect critical elements of adult support and protection practice.  Revision and ongoing oversight by the Adult Protection Committee and Chief Officers Group are required to aid improvement. 

Peter Macleod, Chief Executive of the Care Inspectorate, said: “The Care Inspectorate and our partners Healthcare Improvement Scotland and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary in Scotland were asked by Scottish Ministers to carry out joint inspections of adult support and protection across Scotland.    

“This is a report of our findings for East Ayrshire partnership.  It sets out how effectively they make sure adults at risk of harm are safe, protected, and supported.  

“We found signs of encouraging progress in East Ayrshire and that adults at risk of harm were safer as a result of the collaborative support and protection they received.  Our inspectors have also set out areas that can be further improved to ensure that adults subject to adult support and protection are better protected.” 

The report is available here.