A Freedom of Information Request by a Conservative MP has revealed that in the past 16 months over 4,300 whistleblowers have lodged complaints about the treatment of elderly and disabled people in care.
The number of complaints has risen from 22 per month in December 2010 to 556 in March 2012. Whistle blowing complaints are generally made by staff and relatives. Among the issues raised are complaints about staffing levels, staff failures to responds to residents calls, members of staff assaulting residents and staff refusing to take residents to the toilet.
The Director of Operations at CQC, Amanda Sherlock, said that the BBC Panorama programme on the abuse of patients at Winterbourne View in May 2011 was partly linked to the increase in whistleblowing reports due to greater awareness.
These figures demonstrate the scrutiny care homes face and their need to ensure that they are fully compliant with CQC standards to avoid any potentially damaging reports or enforcement action by CQC.