Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner

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1 Job Title: Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner Job Grade: Band 5 Directorate: Adults, Health and Community Wellbeing The Role Job Reference Number: P02163 To assist with the quality checking and auditing of completed Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards assessments and the allocation of work to Best Interest Assessors; to offer advice; guidance and support to the Best Interest Assessors; to ensure that practice reflects current case law pertinent to the relevant legislation. To represent the authority, where necessary, at the Court of Protection. To undertake assessments in care homes and hospitals and identify, challenge and, where possible, redress discrimination and inequality in all its forms. Respect individuals qualities, abilities and diverse backgrounds, promote the rights, dignity and selfdetermination of individuals who might be deprived of their liberty. Job Purpose To ensure that all the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) assessments are completed appropriately and to a high standard; that the relevant paperwork has been completed and that the legislative requirements are met by the Best Interest Assessors (BIAs). To ensure that the Local Authority is operating a DoLS service across Health and Social Care and within the legislative requirements placed upon the authority. To undertake audits of DoLS assessments, and work with BIAs to promote DoLS across Health and Social Care and with providers. To ensure that the changing nature of DoLS created through case law is cascaded to BIAs and embedded in practice, policy and process. To ensure appropriate and timely reporting on DoLS for both internal and external purposes. To carry out assessments and reviews under the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards 2007 (Amendment to Mental Capacity Act 2005) to establish if a person is being deprived of their liberty, in the person s best interests, necessary to prevent harm to themselves and also a proportionate response to the likelihood of the relevant person suffering harm and the seriousness of that harm. A Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner must have the required qualification and the necessary skills to obtain, evaluate and analyse complex evidence and differing views and to weigh them appropriately in decision-making.

2 A Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner must understand and respect for individual s qualities, abilities and diverse backgrounds. They must have the ability to act independently, and to establish effective relationships with service users, people lacking capacity and carers. A Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner will also undertake DoLS assessments. On completion of the assessment and review they will make recommendations and conditions, if applicable, for the authorization to the relevant Supervisory Body in order to promote the least restrictive practice and maximise peoples independence and rights to liberty. To deliver a high quality effective operational service to vulnerable people. Key Accountabilities Knowledge of Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards 2007, Amended Mental Capacity Act 2005, Mental Health Act 1983 (amended 2007), Human Rights Act 1998, Care Standards Act 2000, national and local policy guidance and ability to apply Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards procedures to assessment role. Ability to take accountability of decisions and judgements made in the Best Interests Assessor role. Ability to keep appropriate records and to provide clear and reasoned reports in accordance with legal requirements and good practice. Obtain, evaluate and analyse complex evidence and differing views and to weigh them appropriately in decision making. Apply knowledge of assessing mental capacity according to the legal framework taking into account a wide range of factors. Understanding the implications of mental incapacity for people who use services, families and carers. Work with service users who lack capacity, their families and carers, Representatives and other professionals including IMCAs and staff from Managing Authorities. Consult, liaise and negotiate with those involved in a Best Interests Assessment, including all significant parties: family, friends, those involved in the person s care, IMCA, Advocate, Representative, Attorney or Deputy, Managing Authority. Assert a best interests perspective and make properly informed independent decisions. Present cases at a legal hearing and exercise the appropriate use of independence, authority and autonomy and use it to inform their practice as a Best Interests Assessor, together with consultation and supervision. The Best Interest Assessor Senior Practitioner must provide a report that explains their conclusion and their reason for it. If they do not support deprivation of liberty, then their report should aim to be as useful as possible to the commissioners and providers of care in deciding on future action (for example, recommending an alternative approach to treatment or care in which deprivation of liberty could be avoided). It may be helpful for the Best Interests Assessor to discuss the possibility of any such alternatives with the providers of care during the assessment process.

3 Where possible, the Best Interests Assessor Senior Practitioner should recommend someone to be appointed as the Relevant Person s Representative. The assessor should be well paced, as a result of the consultation process, to identify whether there is anybody suitable to take on this role. The appointment of the Relevant Person s Representative cannot take place unless and until an authorisation is given. However, by identifying someone to take on this role at an early stage, the Best Interests Assessor can help to ensure that a Representative is appointed as soon as possible. To aid delivery of the safeguarding service through (when appropriate) carrying out tasks such as quality checking of complex mental capacity assessments (MCA2s) with the view of commissioning IMCAs, offering advice, guidance and support to those completing the forms, and being a part of Safeguarding Essex duty telephone service. Provide expert advice and support to the safeguarding work and projects outside Safeguarding Essex when deemed necessary by the Operational Service Manager. To participate effectively in Team Meetings. To providing training/learning support to staff/colleagues, other agencies and providers in relation to the Mental Capacity Act/Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards. Offering guidance and support to more junior team members, including professional supervision as appropriate and in accordance with the Directorate s policies. Working allocated hours in a flexible way (occasionally out of hours if necessary). The post holder will be expected to be committed to continuous workplace learning, which may include undertaking formal training, as part of both individual and organisational development. The above is not an exhaustive list of duties and you will be expected to perform different tasks as necessitated by your changing role within the organisation and the overall business objectives of the organisation. Knowledge, Skills and Experience To be qualified to practice as a Best Interest Assessor and have at least 2 years experience as a practicing Best Interest Assessor. Social worker registered with the Health and Care Professions Council. Evidence of post qualifying training relevant to the post. A first level nurse, registered in Sub-Part 1 of the Nurses Part of the Register, maintained under article 5 of the nursing and midwifery Order 2001, with recordable qualification in Mental Health nursing. A first level nurse, registered in Sub-Part 1 of the register maintained under article 5 of the Nursing and Midwifery Order 2001, their field of practice being Learning Disabilities nursing. An occupational therapist registered in Part 6 of the register maintained under article 5 of the health Professions Order A chartered psychologist who is registered with the British Psychological Society and who holds a practising certificate issued by that Society.

4 Graduate Certificate in Consolidation and Preparation for Specialist Practice under Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (essential) Two years post qualifying experience within the specialist field of: o Learning Disability o Mental Health o Physical Sensory Impairment o Brain Injury o Trained and Approved Best Interest Assessor o Safeguarding Insured in respect of any liabilities that might arise in connection with carrying out the assessment A strong commitment to improving service delivery to meet the needs of service users. Genuine commitment to Equal Opportunities and Anti-discriminatory practice. Willingness and ability to work as part of a team with a commitment to sharing and working alongside staff in other organisations. A desire to work collaboratively with other agencies and groups in enhancing service delivery. Ability to work in complex situations and make autonomous decisions. An understanding of the process and purpose supervision. Experiences of working under pressure and being able to prioritise your workload demands. Familiarity with and understanding of computerised systems. Ability to communicate clearly both verbally and in writing. Ability to emphasise with service user needs and promote those needs in relation to independence, wellbeing and choice. Proven ability to meet timescales and deadlines for own workload. Assessment and recording skills. It is essential that you are able to drive and have a full driving licence or have access to a car and driver. Values and Behaviours CUSTOMER FOCUSSED AND PROACTIVE Working together we proactively engage with our customers and listen to their needs in order to continuously improve our service. Develops and delivers effective systems that enable the delivery of a quality customer service Uses customer insight to create an environment where customer service is valued, recognized, and seen as a priority Proactively engage with our customers to deliver innovative and exceptional service. Make decisions that are mutually beneficial to the customer and the authority Use customer feedback to understand what good looks like to improve service delivery & measure performance Identify key measurable targets to continuously improve customer satisfaction

5 ENABLING AND EMPOWERING Working together, we provide confidence and trust to support the delivery of the right services for our customers. Creates an environment that promotes self-development, openness and innovation Delegate effectively in order to achieve greater empowerment and accountability within set clear parameters Create a culture through personal behaviours that promotes inclusion Demonstrates an understanding of the political environment and makes decisions /takes action appropriately Communicates openly with others to improve levels of understanding and engagement EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT Working together we will achieve our objectives in the best possible way, so that we deliver the results that make the biggest difference to the people we serve. Continually seeks new ways to introduce best practice in order to reduce duplication, bureaucracy and waste Develop and implement new ways of working to stretch performance, improve efficiency and deliver value for money Empowers others to innovate and challenge current practices Takes ownership for the implementation of corporate initiatives to help deliver change and continuous improvement Safeguarding Essex County Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults, and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment. Pre-Employment Checks appropriate to this Job Profile Essex County Council (ECC) is committed to ensuring all recruitment is undertaken fairly, effectively, safely and in accordance with legislation. The information below provides pre-employment screening guidance for candidates applying to this job at Essex County Council.

6 Role Requirement: Working with children / vulnerable adults, in a specified place or post Pre-Employment Check Self Declaration (Spent and unspent convictions) CRB Enhanced Level (renewed every three years for ES&H staff only) References Definition A declaration of spent and unspent convictions must be completed by employees who work with vulnerable adults or children The CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) check will be sought by ECC All posts defined as Regulated or Controlled as outlined in the ISA Regulations will require: At least two employer references one reference is required prior to interview and should ideally be from your current/most recent employer Reference history covering a minimum of five years employment A reference from the last employer where the post gave access to children or vulnerable adults Any gaps of 4 weeks or more will be explored by the manager at interview stage. Where appropriate additional character references will be taken up Medical Eligibility / Right to work in the UK Regulatory qualifications and professional registration (subject to role) All new recruits and employees whose role changes significantly are required to complete a medical health questionnaire Proof is required and original documentation will be sought i.e. passport or full birth certificate Original qualification certificates and proof of registration with a professional body are required (if applicable)

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