Study’s concerns for family support in Oxfordshire

The Oxford Times: Connor Sparrowhawk Connor Sparrowhawk

Families of people with complex learning disabilities must be involved more in their care, a report on Oxfordshire services recommends.

The Oxfordshire Family Support Network report, released today, said: “The barriers between families and professionals have to be removed.”

The report – ordered by the county’s official health and social care watchdog Healthwatch – raises concerns about people’s smooth transition from child to adult care.

It said it is “deeply concerned” there is no inpatient facility for those under 25, with some having to travel as far as Norfolk, and it was worried about the use of restraint.

The report is dedicated to Connor Sparrowhawk, who died after drowning in a bath at NHS unit Slade House, Headington, last July. A probe found his death was preventable.

A statement from Oxfordshire County Council and Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group said all learning disability services are being reviewed.

It welcomed the study and said: “Our primary objective is to ensure the safety of those who are being cared for.”




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