Chris's Story on behalf of Ethel

I am working as a 39d IMCA (Independent Mental Capacity Advocate) supporting an RPR (Relevant Person’s Representative) in challenging a DoLS (Deprivation of Liberty authorisation) authorisation for her family member. I support Chris and her family member, who lives in a Care Home, Ethel.

A person who lives in a Care Home or Hospital, who is under continuous supervision and control, and who meets the “acid test” for the DoLS criteria, requires a DoLS authorisation (a Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards) authorisation to formalise the restrictions in place, and deprive a person of their liberty. Part of the person’s rights under this legal framework, allows them to challenge the decision for them to live in a specific placement, and they are entitled to challenge the restrictions in place too.

Prior to my involvement the RPR explained to me that she felt “she had got nowhere in the 6 months prior to my involvement”. I am now successfully supporting her to challenge on behalf of Ethel through the Court of Protection (CoP). This piece of work will also ensure that Ethel is given the opportunity to look at other “least restrictive options” which might be available for her to live in, aswell as a return home. I have also assisted Chris in getting a Social Worker allocated to Ethel to explore what other options could be explored.

With help from her 39d IMCA Chris has been able to instruct a Solicitor on behalf of Ethel, and Chris has also challenged decision making on behalf of Ethel, including challenging the DNAR which was implemented without Ethel’s knowledge.

Within weeks of involvement of the 39d IMCA Chris commented “you have achieved more in the last few weeks than Ethel’s team of professionals have done in almost seven months”. Chris felt that services were disjointed and that there was no holistic approach with Ethel’s professional team. Chris stated “until you [the 39d IMCA) became involved, there was a complete breakdown of information regarding Ethel’s health and welfare. Any queries I, [Chris] had were met with a very frosty response”. Chris told us during our involvement “you’ve moved mountains!  I think she [Ethel] is in very good hands”.   

Chris has given the following review:

Well done Advocacy Focus

I recently became a RPR (Relevant Persons Representative), for a close family member. At that time I had no idea what would be expected of me, or how I could be of value.

Advocacy Focus, have been absolutely amazing. The Advocate assigned to our case has been so caring and so supportive. Her knowledge and reassurance is exactly what I required. Her advice and guidance has been invaluable. I no longer feel isolated in my quest to provide the right kind of care and support for my family member. Advocacy Focus, has given me the confidence and wherewithal to take on the challenge. A massive thank you for everything!”