Legislation & Dementia Care

Legislations and framework are put in place to govern work with individuals who have dementia

Mental Capacity Act-

Mental capacity is the ability to make decisions for yourself. This act is for individuals who may lack capacity such as people with dementia. This act aims to protect and empower individuals so that they can make their own decisions about their care and treatment. The act ensures all reasonable help and support is provided to assist a person with dementia to make their own decisions and to communicate those decisions, before it can be assumed that they have lost capacity. Moreover, any decisions taken on the behalf of someone with dementia must be the option least restrictive to the individual's rights and freedoms.

Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act-

This act aims to to ensure that no one is allowed to work in the care sector if they have ever abused, neglected or otherwise harmed vulnerable adults in their care or placed them at risk. People with dementia are vulnerable and should always be safeguarded as they do not have the same mental capacity as other people. Under this act, employers must not knowingly employ anyone who is barred from working with vulnerable adults as this is a legal requirement. Also, employers must refer people to the vetting and barring scheme if they have been dismissed for harming a vulnerable adult.

Human rights Act-

Human rights act promotes rights to life, freedom, respect for private and family life, and other rights that protect and allow individuals to be treated equally and live happily. People with dementia are at risk of discrimination and infringements of their human rights because they may not have the capacity to challenge abuses of their human rights or to report what has occurred..Human rights are put in place for vulnerable adults and people with dementia as they may face age discrimination, because most people with dementia are over the age of 65. The human rights act ensures people with dementia are treated with dignity and respect and should have access to high quality care, that is based on an assessment of personal needs and preferences, rather than prejudiced assumptions about dementia.

Mental health act-

This act aims to protect the rights of people who have a mental disorder, like dementia. It deals with situations like individuals being admitted into hospital, and when it may be appropriate for them to be sectioned against their will. The act ensures that they are only admitted to hospital against their will when it is absolutely essential to ensure their well-being or safety, or for the protection of other people. Under the act doctors and other professionals are expected to consider all other treatment options first, and to only detain someone against their will as a last option. The act also describes how support should be arranged for people once they are discharged from hospital. The main purpose of this act is to protect individuals with mental health problems, even if they do not have the intention of protecting themselves or others who may be at risk.

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