Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust is committed to the wellbeing of all people using our services.
We take the abuse of vulnerable adults and children very seriously and we are committed to responding to allegations effectively. The Trust has a dedicated Safeguarding Children Team and Safeguarding Nurse Advisor for Vulnerable Adults who work across four key areas:
- Advice and consultancy
- Governance arrangements
Staff in all services – not just those designed for vulnerable people – can come into contact with adults and children who need safeguarding. We work hard to ensure that all staff are aware of their responsibilities in this respect and that they understand how to keep our patients and visitors safe.
We also work closely with other public agencies, including education, social services, police, and other health services, to ensure that we properly safeguard vulnerable people.
Safeguarding is underpinned by:
- Up to date policies and processes to safeguard children and adults at risk and to protect the public
- Staff trained in local safeguarding procedures
- Board level leadership and the specialist safeguarding professionals
- Active membership of local safeguarding boards
- Listening to the safety concerns of patients, their families and visitors.
If a child or adult is at risk of harm:
- Tell a member of staff or Trust PALS team about your concerns.
- Contact the local council’s Children Services or Adult Social Care to inform them of any concerns about the abuse of a child or adult.
- Contact your local police on 101 if you are concerned that an offence may have occurred.
- Contact the police on 999 if someone is in immediate danger of significant harm, injury or death.
If you would like more information about Safeguarding within the Trust, please contact:
Strategic Lead for Safeguarding Adults
Safeguarding refers to all work which enables adults to retain independence, well-being and choice in order to live a life that is free from abuse and neglect.
An Adult at Risk is defined as:
“any person aged eighteen-years or over – who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself; or is unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation”.
Abuse can be described as “a violation of an individual’s human and civil rights by any other person or person(s)” and is often open to wide interpretation.
Abuse can occur in any form of relationship and may result in significant harm to, or exploitation of, the person subjected to it.
Abuse can be either a single or repeated act and can be physical, verbal or psychological. It may be an act of neglect or an omission to act, or it may occur when a vulnerable person is persuaded to enter into a transaction to which he or she has not or cannot consent. It can take place in any setting – including an individual’s private home, care home, hospital, day service, public transport, police station or college.
In the Trust we believe that safeguarding is everyone’s business.
This means, whoever you are, wherever you are and whatever position you have – you have a responsibility to take action to help protect our local residents when you hear about allegations of abuse or neglect.
We will strive to prevent and protect from harm.
Safeguarding Adults Board
The Safeguarding Adults Board leads and oversees the work of all Adult Safeguarding arrangements in Gateshead.
It is responsible for ensuring that services provided are of a high standard and arrangements work effectively – to ensure all adults are safeguarded and can live independent and fulfilling lives in the community.
The Board is responsible for providing strategic vision and leadership, and for the production of a Safeguarding Adults Partnership Plan. It is also responsible for driving forward and delivering upon the actions identified in the Improvement and Development Action Plan and is crucial in helping to embed the safeguarding vision at an executive level across all partner agencies.