There must be a written policy to promote zero tolerance of abuse and neglect of Residents. This policy must be communicated to all staff, Residents and substitute decision-makers. This policy must comply with the Regulation and the Home must ensure compliance with the policy.
At a minimum, the policy must meet all of the following
- State that abuse and neglect are not to be tolerated
- Clearly set out what constitutes abuse and neglect
- Provide for a program for preventing abuse and neglect that complies with the Regulation
- Contain an explanation of the duty under section 24 of the LTCHA to make mandatory reports
- Set out procedures for investigating and responding to alleged, suspected or witnessed abuse and neglect of Resident
- Set out the consequences for those who abuse or neglect Residents
Section 23 of the LTCHA requires the Home to immediately investigate and take appropriate action relating to every alleged, suspected or witnessed incident of abuse of a Resident by anyone and incident of neglect of a Resident by the Home or its staff that is known by or reported to the Home. The results of the investigation and the action taken must be reported to the Director. Section 104 of the Regulation sets out the information that must be included in this report.
Any person who has reasonable grounds to believe that a Resident has been or may be abused by anyone or neglected by the Home or staff that resulted in harm or a risk of harm to a Resident must immediately report this suspicion to the Director under section 24 of the LTCHA.
Section 25 of the LTCHA requires the Director to conduct an inspection or make inquiries when he or she receives information regarding the abuse of a Resident by anyone or neglect of a Resident by the Home or staff that resulted in harm or a risk of harm to the Resident.
Section 96 of the Regulation specifies additional requirements for the Home’s policy to promote zero tolerance of abuse and neglect of Residents. The policy must meet all of the following:
- Include procedures and interventions to assist and support Residents who have been abused or neglected, or allegedly abused or neglected
- Contain procedures and interventions to deal with persons who have abused or neglected or allegedly abused or neglected Residents, as appropriate
- Identify measures and strategies to prevent abuse and neglect
- Identify how allegations of abuse and neglect will be investigated by the Home, including who will undertake the investigation and who will be informed of the investigation
- Identify the training and retraining requirements for all staff including training about the power imbalances between staff and Residents, the potential for abuse and neglect by those in a position of trust, power and responsibility for
- Resident care, and situations that may lead to abuse and neglect and how to avoid them