Catherine House Surgery has a statutory duty of care to protect the children we work with and for from abuse and exploitation. Having safeguards in place within any organisation not only protects and promotes the welfare of children at risk, but also enhances the confidence of staff, volunteers, parents/carers and the general public. Protecting children from abuse and neglect, preventing impairment of health and development, and ensuring children grow up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care enables them to have optimum life chances and enter adulthood successfully.
Catherine House Surgery is committed to being a child-safe practice. Research has shown that child abuse offenders target organisations that work with children and then seek to abuse their position. Our policy seeks to minimise such risks. In addition, our policy aims to protect individuals against false allegations of abuse and the reputation of the practice and professionals. This will be achieved through clearly defined procedures, code of conduct and an open culture of support.
The following are key components of our policy:
- All staff to be in receipt of safeguarding training
- Presence of named lead safeguarding GP (Dr James Cooper) and deputy (Dr Julie Franklin) trained to level 3 standard
- Ensuring patients can raise and make complaints related to abuse
- Widespread availability throughout the practice of safeguarding material, including patient information leaflets
- Sharing relevant information with other providers in accordance with local safeguarding procedures
- Encouragement of GP attendance at child protection conferences
- An actively promoted whisteblowing policy
- Proof of identity checks for new employees, along with a Disclosure and Barring Service check
- Demonstrated commitment to child safeguarding in both job advertisements and subsequent interviews