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Policy Statement

The Policy

Assessing Care Needs

Handling Information about Service Users within this Organisation

Behaviour of Staff

Service Users from Minority Groups

Related Policies

Related Guidance

Training Statement

Policy Statement

This organisation is committed to the delivery of a quality service that maintains the privacy, dignity, and respect of service users at all times. It is often complacency that threatens to undermine these principles, and staff in particular need to be mindful that they are in the client’s home by invitation only. Therefore, the role of your relationship should be that of a respectful guest. As some tasks that are undertaken by the staff are of a very personal and sensitive nature, boundaries must be in place to protect the privacy, dignity, and respect of the service user in these circumstances

The Policy

This document outlines the policy of this organisation in relation to providing services that respect the privacy and dignity of our service users. This organisation aims at all times to respect the right of its service users to privacy and dignity, recognising that these values can easily be threatened by the processes covering the provision of care in a service user’s home.

Assessing Care Needs

We recognise that assessing the needs of a service user can be very intrusive. We are obliged to ask questions about the most intimate areas of a service user’s life, and it is helpful at the outset of our contact to observe a service user in their private environment where care will be delivered. We will do everything possible to limit the embarrassment a service user can experience at this stage and to provide all possible reassurances about the nature of our operations generally, but particularly the confidentiality of our information systems and the sensitivity of our workforce.

Some potential service users will wish a carer or representative to be present during the assessment interviews, but we do not assume that they will necessarily be privy to all of the information the service user has to provide about themselves. If it seems helpful, we will arrange for some parts of the interview to take place with the service user alone.

During the period when we are providing services, we occasionally need to review the situation to ensure both that our services remain appropriate and to make adjustments to respond to changing care needs. If the staff who undertake a review are not already known to the service user, additional sensitivity will be required since, from the service user’s point of view, they are confronting a stranger. Staff too may pick up some information about a service user’s changing care needs during the process of service delivery. The staff should check with the service user whether they have any objection to details being recorded, though they may have to explain that information does indeed have to be shared with colleagues in the company.

Handling Information about Service Users within this Organisation

When information about service users has to be passed from a staff to a manager, or between staff, it will always be treated with respect. Arrangements for processing, handling and storing data are based on the need to retain as much privacy for our service users as possible.

Behaviour of Staff

Staff are instructed never to forget that they are guests in the service user’s home and to be careful that familiarity does not blunt the respect that they should continue to show to their host.

We know that some service users have forms of address for themselves to which they are particularly attached, or, conversely, forms they find particularly offensive. Our staff will make note of and observe such individual preferences; staff will always address a service user by their chosen name and know that the acceptable usage may vary between people or over time.

We know that many people receiving domiciliary care find it important that they are helped at a time of day that is convenient for them, and we will try to respect service users’ preferences in these areas.

Staff who carry out tasks that relate to service users’ personal appearance will provide tactful help to ensure that their service users look as they would wish.

We recognise that the carrying out of some tasks, particularly those relating to intimate bodily functions, places service users’ privacy and dignity at severe risk. We will ensure that our staff demonstrate great tact in such situations.

Some situations may carry additional sensitivity if the staff member is of a different sex from the service user; if asked, we will attempt to provide service users with same-sex staff.

Staff have been instructed to be alert to the potential invasion of privacy involved in handling service users’ possessions or documents, and will always respect the boundaries a service user chooses to set.

If a service user is particularly sensitive about their privacy or dignity in any other area of their lifestyle, staff will tread with particular care.

Service Users from Minority Groups

We are aware that issues of privacy and dignity may be especially relevant when the service user is from a minority group. We seek to make our staff alert to points of cultural difference that they may encounter in their work, and we encourage our service users to draw to our attention any particular matter of which we should be aware. For example, in certain cultures, the men are the head of the household and women cannot be spoken directly to or asked any questions. During the assessment process, care must be taken to ensure that these cultural differences are taken into account. Please refer to the Equality and Diversity Policy, PART TWO.

Related Policies

Adult Safeguarding

Assessment of Need and Eligibility

Care and Support Planning

Continuity of Care for Support Workers


Cyber Security

Data Protection Legislative Framework (GDPR)

Duty of Candour

Equality and Diversity

Good Governance

Handling of Service Users money

Ill-Treatment and Wilful Neglect

Meetings Needs

Service users Records (HOME)

Service user’s Home Security

Social Inclusion

Related Guidance

Equality Act Guidance:

Equality and Human Rights Commission:

ACAS The Human Rights Act:

SCIE: Dignity in Care:

Training Statement

All staff, during induction, are made aware of the organisation’s policies and procedures, all of which are used for training updates. All policies and procedures are reviewed and amended where necessary, and staff are made aware of any changes. Observations are undertaken to check skills and competencies. Various methods of training are used, including one to one, online, workbook, group meetings, and individual supervisions. External courses are sourced as required.

Date Reviewed: October 2022

Person responsible for updating this policy:

Next Review Date: October 2023

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