HSE Media Releases: 18 January 2021
Throughout this week, HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s Safeguarding Committee will use social media and local broadcast and print media particular to counties Carlow, Kilkenny, South Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford in a targeted information campaign around messages such as “when you plan your future care it’s better for everyone.”
The Committee is chaired by HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s Head of Safeguarding, Ms Janette Dwyer. It was formed to promote the safeguarding of vulnerable adults and is made up of representatives from statutory, community and voluntary agencies in Carlow, Kilkenny, Waterford, Wexford and South Tipperary.
The role of the Committee is to support the development of a culture within the area and within services, which promotes the welfare of vulnerable persons by producing a three-year action plan to include media campaigns and awareness-raising.
The Committee also works very closely with Safeguarding Ireland in supporting their advocacy campaigns.
Speaking about the information campaign, Geraldine Sutton (Principal Social Worker with the HSE/South East Community Healthcare’s Safeguarding Team in the region and also a member of the Safeguarding Committee) says:
“Our Safeguarding Team in the South East received 1,333 referrals of suspected or alleged abuse of vulnerable adults in 2020. We are, therefore, acutely aware of the need for safeguarding vulnerable adults. Ensuring vulnerable adults are supported to make choices about their future can significantly reduce their risk of experiencing abuse.”
“This is a very important campaign and I would urge all older people to record their future wishes and to plan ahead.”
Planning ahead, your important life decisions are even more important now during the COVID-19 pandemic – as greater risks are posed to our health and well-being. That means that if in the future, you did not have the capacity to make our own decisions (due to illness, or age-related frailty) that there is clarity on your future wishes regarding healthcare, where you would like to be cared for, who can act on your behalf, and use of your money. This means planning ahead now, thinking about, talking about and recording these important preferences. Advance planning also safeguards against the risks of being treated badly, disrespected, or suffering from adult abuse when we are vulnerable.
If you suspect that any vulnerable older adult in the community is being treated badly, disrespected or if there are any safeguarding concerns, please contact the HSE Regional Safeguarding Office on 056 778 4325 or the HSE Infoline on 1850 241 850.
Last updated on: 18 / 01 / 2021