To undertake an agile discovery approach to the new Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS) legislation, mapping the differences to the current Deprivation of Liberty process and optimising ways of engaging all stakeholders and then develop a digital solution that works for all partners.
New legislation – the Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act – will change the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) process in every local authority and is due to come into force in October 2020. As such every council will need to engage with partners – particularly care homes, CCGs and hospitals – to support them with the changes that LPS will bring in terms of process, training and rigour.
This project will be a collaboration of local government business analysts and technology solution specialists and five co-funding local authorities, supported by the Local Government Association’s Social Care Digital Innovation Programme (SCDIP). The project will be undertaken in two phases - discovery and development/implementation - with Social Care Programme Board approval post the discovery phase.
This project has been prioritised alongside the core Social Care Digital Innovation Programme (SCDIP) as there is a clear need across local government to swiftly accelerate transformation and take-up in this area. The project has been identified not only due to the potential for sector led co-design and collaboration, but because the results will have real and immediate value to all councils.
As such the LGA has agreed to part fund this project alongside their wider SCDIP programme and is keen to see a group of councils work together with a relevant technology partner to progress the work. The project will report into the SCDIP Board as it progresses and be independently evaluated by the Institute of Public Care.
Under the current Deprivation of Liberty process, local authorities are the “supervisory” body for all cases. When the new Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act comes into force, providers and settings with little experience in this area will need to understand the business process and apply the new legislation. As such there is an opportunity to define new roles and responsibilities, and put a new digital solution and business process in place.
Mental Capacity (Amendment) Act proposes amendments to the process for authorising a deprivation of liberty in the following ways:
The DoL caseload in a large number of councils across England has increased significantly over the past few years and in many there is also a backlog of cases awaiting authorisation. This situation means that often DoLS cannot be put in place within the statutory timeframes. Current estimates show there is a current national backlog of DoLS - yet to be authorised - of 125,000.
With the situation as it is and the impending change in legislation, there is an immediate need across the local government sector to co-ordinate how it responds. Caseload and workflow modelling strongly suggests that frontline savings can be made by deploying a digital solution to improve the process between care homes, hospitals, CCGs and the council and reduce the time taken on each LPS. A solution will also facilitate simpler engagement, help reduce the backlog as well as reduce risk.
* £15,000 in MVP phase with a further £35,000 for the implementation phase subject to NHS Digital/SCDIP Board approval.