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.

24th June 2015

Who is responsible for carrying out mental capacity assessments?

At my recent inspection I was told that as a manager it was my place to carryout mental capacity assessments on my residents.

I informed them that I refer my residents via the GP after confirming there is no UTI to the mental health team who come and visit the resident. One of the staff who knows them well along with a family member if they are available will sit in on the visit to support the resident. The mental health nurse practitioner will then talk to the team. She will then talk to others in her team which includes a specialist doctor.

When they have made a plan this is given to us added to the care plan and monitor by staff using ABC charts and daily recording.

I feel that I am not qualified to carry these assessments and that it could be seen as a conflict of interest if I say a person lacks capacity.

What is the correct procedure in this area as I am not sure?


Dear Jill,

You have important responsibilities under the Mental Capacity Act which you should not ignore. I would advise you in the first instance to read the Health and Social Care Workers: Mental Capacity Act Decisions which explains what your responsibilities and the responsibilities of all social care workers are.

Please read this booklet very carefully. Decisions that have to be made are not just health related they are about many different aspects of an individual’s life.

Decisions about Mental Capacity have to be made on a case by case basis and decisions about health may have to be made by health professionals but many other decisions will be made by you or your staff and should be properly recorded.

Please come back to me if you require further information but you should also have in the home a copy of the Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice.

Best wishes,


*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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