Ask Sheila - Archive England

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and therefore is no longer available to answer your social care questions. However, you might still find the answer you’ve been searching for down below.

10th July 2020

Can you refuse to see a client?

If a client spoke to you inappropriately and because of this you are not comfortable going back in, can you refuse to go in?

Hi C,

thank you for your email. I understand that you must have felt vulnerable when you are on your own in this situation is someone’s house. I would suggest before you refuse to go in again, if you have not done already, talk to your line manager. Make sure you let them know what happened. It may help to write it down first. You need to say when it happened, who the client was, what you were doing when the client spoke to you inappropriately and what the client said. If this was the first time you have visited, your manager may know more about the care needs and anything that may help to understand why the client behaved this way. It is also important your manager knows about the incident because as an employer they must protect their workforce from violence or aggression. If this is a known pattern of behaviour there must be a risk assessment in place to eliminate or minimise the risk. In case like this, it may help if the manager speaks to the client to warn them that this behaviour is not acceptable. This is harder however if the client lacks capacity or if the behaviour is because of a mental or physical illness. If this is the case it may be more difficult to manage and your manager may need to speak to the GP or ask for Social Services support. I hope this helps.


*All information is correct at the time of publishing.


About Sheila

Sheila Scott OBE has now retired and over the years , prior to her retirement she has answered thousands of your social questions. You can still access the many questions below.

For Sheila Scott OBE as the former CEO of National Care Association (NCA), care is Sheila's life. She possesses a strong command of the issues facing the care sector informed by her long career as a nursing professional, the owner and manager of a care business, and as a leader in the care sector.

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