Care agencies are being urged to ensure the staff they recruit to work in vulnerable people’s homes can speak English.
Dr Shereen Hussein, who is a researcher at King’s College London and adviser to the Department of Health, warns that language barriers can sometimes lead to poor care or abuse, which is naturally very upsetting for the patient as well as their family and friends.
She therefore, wants to see the introduction of a standard interview process to establish the English language proficiency of care workers.
Recent changes in immigration have altered the profile of foreign migrants who work in the UK as carers.
People from outside the EU working in the UK’s care sector have previously had to prove their competence in English before getting a job, but this is no longer the case with new arrivals from EU countries.
New migrants can be vulnerable when they’re placed in people’s homes. A number of carers have reported instances of racism and discrimination that stem from problems with communication.
In some parts of the UK it is estimated that around half of care workers are foreign nationals.
Care home abuse
Dr Hussein believes a standardised interview to help care agencies identify where training is needed when it comes to ability in English before members of staff are deployed would help reduce instances of care home abuse.
Such abuse not only affects the patient, it also has a profound effect on family and friends who will feel anger, confusion and possibly even guilt that their loved one has been subjected to such treatment.
Victims of care home abuse could be entitled to seek compensation through a medical negligence claim.
Accident Advice Helpline can assess your medical negligence claim and determine whether you have cause for compensation, while its 30-second claim calculator can tell you how much you could be able to claim.
Source: BBC News