This page is a printable version of: https://www.haveringccg.nhs.uk/Our-work/safeguarding-adults/mental-capacity-and-dols.htm
Date: 16 September 2021
The Mental Capacity Act provides a statutory, structured framework for personal welfare, healthcare and financial decisions. This enables people to make as many decisions for themselves as possible and set out their wishes in advance.
The Act applies whenever a decision needs to be made on behalf of a person who lacks capacity, including any assessment of the need for treatment, services or support.
The Act clarifies:
The legal definition states that a person lacks capacity if they have an impairment or disorder of the mind or brain, and cannot do one or more of the four things listed below:
The DoLS legislation came into force in April 2009 and originally applied to any person who lacks capacity and is currently being cared for in a care home or hospital setting. Hospital and care home managers would need to seek an authorisation from Barking & Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge Councils Dols teams.
These arrangements were extended to cover people in other situations following decisions made by the Supreme Court in 2014 known as the Cheshire West case. This means that for those who live in settings such as a supported tenancy or their own home they can still be subject to a deprivation of liberty dependent upon the “acid test” being applied i.e. is the person subject to continuous supervision and control? And are they free to leave? – with the focus being not on whether a person seems to be wanting to leave, but on how those who support them would react if they did want to leave. If the answer is yes to these questions and the person lacks capacity to consent to the arrangements then an application will need to be made to the Court of Protection by those funding the care (either the Council or CCG).
These safeguards protect people who are unable to make decisions for themselves. This may be because of conditions such as:
If you are concerned about somebody and think there should be an Authorisation in place, please make a referral to relevant Council Dols teams (or speak to the person’s nurse or social worker).
To make an application / request a review for a Deprivation of Liberty Safeguard the relevant guidance and paperwork can be found on the following link:
If you have any queries about making a DoLS application to the Council, contact the DoLS team where the person resides:
London Borough of Havering
Applications can be completed online at: Deprivation of liberty safeguards
Telephone: 01708 433550
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham
Applications should be sent to email: DOLS@lbbd.gov.uk
Telephone: 020 8227 2064 / 2482
London Borough of Redbridge
Completed applications should be sent via email: email@example.com
Telephone: 020 8708 5395
For those living at home, supported living or residential college (16+), please contact the Redbridge Safeguarding Adults & Protection Team on 020 8708 5395.
The Government have decided to replace the current DOLS scheme with the Liberty Protection Safeguards. This will take some time to come into force. The new scheme will seek to improve ways to ensure that the wishes and feelings of the person are a part of the process and that LPS planning starts a lot sooner when best interest decisions are needed. Further information can be found on the Social Care Institute for Excellence website
The Department of Health issued a Code of Practice which covers all details of the Act.
If someone lacking capacity is facing decisions about medical treatment or changes in accommodation and is 'unbefriended', there is support available. An IMCA can help them and offer guidance to the decision maker.
When a serious decision needs to be made about a person’s change of accommodation or treatment, or there are Safeguarding Concerns or a care review is due, we are able to:
In this way, advocates provide a vital support network which protects vulnerable people’s rights.
IMCA services contact details:
London Borough of Havering - Telephone: 01708 560660 - Email: Havering MIND: firstname.lastname@example.org
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham Telephone: 020 7358 7070 - Email: email@example.com
London Borough of Redbridge - Telephone: 020 8900 2221 (Helpline Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm) - Email: firstname.lastname@example.org -