In recent times, there has been a shift in how police services respond to calls for assistance from NHS Mental Health Units. Many of you will have heard of the ‘Right Care Right Person’ (RCRP) operational model developed by Humberside Police.
In a letter sent to leaders of London health and social care providers on 24th May 2023, Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley confirmed that the Metropolitan Police’s will begin to introduce RCRP from September 2023. The Metropolitan Police’s decision to no longer respond to such calls has sparked a debate that may have far-reaching implications for other police service areas.
The issue at hand revolves around the implementation of restrictive restraint techniques and the need for appropriate training and skills for NHS staff working with highly vulnerable, potentially violent, and dangerous individuals.
This article delves into the implications of the Metropolitan Police’s decision, the importance of proper training for NHS staff, and how the NFPS BTEC Level 3 Restraint Instructor Award Course could play a pivotal role in addressing these concerns.
The Ban on Restrictive Restraint Techniques
The ban on restrictive and pain-compliance techniques within NHS Mental Health Units stems from a tragic incident involving Seni Lewis.
Seni Lewis, a young man suffering from mental health issues, tragically lost his life after being restrained by eleven police officers who were called to assist NHS staff.
This incident exposed the lack of proper training, knowledge, and skills among NHS staff when dealing with highly vulnerable individuals who may exhibit violent and dangerous behaviours.
Implications of the Police Service’s Response
This post concerns calls made to police that do not meet the newly established threshold for police intervention*. The Metropolitan Police’s decision not to respond to calls for assistance from NHS Mental Health Units raises concerns about patient safety and effective crisis management.
When faced with potentially violent or dangerous individuals, the lack of police support could leave NHS staff ill-equipped to handle such situations.
This could lead to potential risks for both patients and staff, putting lives at stake and potentially leading to avoidable and arguably foreseeable harm.
The Need for Proper Training and Skills
As police services distance themselves from providing immediate assistance to NHS Mental Health Units, the importance of appropriate training and skills for NHS staff becomes even more evident.
Proper training can equip NHS staff with the knowledge and techniques necessary to safely manage challenging situations without resorting to excessive force or restraint.
The NFPS Ltd BTEC Level 3 Restraint Instructor Award Course
The NFPS Ltd BTEC Level 3 Restraint Instructor Award Course offers a comprehensive training program designed to meet current legal and health and safety requirements.
With regards the standards mentioned in the Mental Health Units (Use of Force) Statutory Guidance, NFPS meets the standards so far as the standards are legally defensible, which is to say we absolutely do preserve and recognise the necessity for highly restrictive holds and pain compliance.
Further, we do not obfuscate our techniques by using terminology such as ‘escape & rescue’ to obtain a kitemark that offers nothing above what a competent risk assessment should already satisfy.
By enrolling in this course, NHS staff can develop the skills needed to manage potentially violent individuals safely, reducing the need for police intervention and minimising risks to all parties involved.
The Benefits of NFPS Ltd Training
The NFPS Advanced Restraint course provides NHS staff with a range of skills, including de-escalation techniques, non-restrictive physical interventions, and crisis communication.
By adopting a holistic approach to managing challenging behaviours, NHS staff can create a more secure and therapeutic environment for their patients whilst giving full regards to their human rights.
Realising the Importance of Training: Google Reviews and Testimonials
NFPS Ltd proudly showcases numerous Google reviews and personal testimonials on their Advanced Restraint page, demonstrating the effectiveness and impact of their training.
Positive feedback from past participants highlights the value of the course in preparing NHS staff for various scenarios they might encounter in mental health units.
The Metropolitan Police’s decision to no longer respond to calls from NHS Mental Health Units raises important questions about patient safety and effective crisis management.
The ban on restrictive and pain-compliance techniques underscores the need for proper training and skills for NHS staff dealing with vulnerable individuals.
The NFPS BTEC Level 3 Restraint Instructor Award course offers a solution by equipping NHS staff with essential knowledge and techniques to handle potentially violent situations safely.
By promoting the importance of this training, we can work towards ensuring the safety and well-being of both patients and staff within mental health units. Remember, a competent risk assessment is a statutory requirement and takes precedence over statutory guidance.
With regards the CQC, they have said in a FOI that should an organisation fail to evidence obtaining the kitemark in question, they would look for strong reasons as to why; they did not say they would automatically downgrade your service rating!
The implications to the CQC in doing so may be severe, because doing so may be tantamount to tortious interference of your business, especially when you can evidence you already provide a sutiable and sufficient level of service that adequately meets the duty of care owed to your service users.
A court will care far less about obtaining a kitemark when compared to evidencing a competent risk assessment.
If you, or your organisation can evidence that implementing the ‘standards’ would breach the duty of care owed, then why would you adopt them and pay (considerably) for a kitemark that will highly likely open you to prosecution?
Also, if regard has been given to the standards as part of your own risk assessments and you can evidence you meet the standards, or indeed better them, then why pay for a product you essentially already provide?
To be clear, these standards are mandated strictly for in-patient mental health units only and this is defined as follows. For anything outside this, the standards are not mandatory:
“Mental Health Unit is described as a health service hospital or independent hospital in England (or part thereof) that provides treatment to inpatients for a mental disorder. An independent hospital (or part thereof) will only be a ‘mental health unit’ if its purpose is “to provide treatment to inpatients for mental disorder”, and “at least some of that treatment is provided, or is intended to be provided, for the purposes of the NHS.”
What To Do Next
Our next BTEC Level 3 Restraint Instructor Award course commences on the 4th September at Lilleshall National Sports Centre.
Alternatively you can email and questions to us direct:
Rab: [email protected]
Trevel: [email protected]
We look forward to speaking with you and hope to see you on the course.
* Threshold tests for police intervention
All calls for service are subject to the following threshold tests for police intervention.
- Is there a real and immediate risk to life or serious harm to an identified person?
- Is it a medical emergency?
- Is a child at risk of significant harm?
- Is the person suspected to have a mental health problem?
- Has a crime been committed?
- Is this a missing person report?