Reading Borough Council v P (by her litigation friend, the Official Solicitor) SS, HS and KS  EWCOP 27
Best interests decision concerning whether P should remain in a care home placement or have a trial period of care with KS, her daughter, in circumstances where her daughter’s hostility to the placement could undermine the care P receives.
P, who suffers from Alzheimer’s and has other illnesses along with a history of falls, was admitted to hospital with a hip fracture. She lived with KS at the time. Previous proceedings had determined that P should be discharged to a residential care home but that home served notice as a result of difficulties, in particular with KS, who made safeguarding allegations. Another care home placement was found but KS still sought P’s return to her home though the OS, SS and HS (P’s sons) all agreed that it was in P’s best interests to remain in her current placement.
HHJ Owens decides that P should remain in the care home placement largely because ’somewhat unusually’ she found that ’the least restrictive option for P is for her to remain in a care home where she is deprived of her liberty because this enables her to continue to have frequent contact with all her family.’. Other concerns included the suitability of KS’s flat and the unsettling effect that a trial placement would have on P. HHJ Owens also finds that the risks of KS undermining the placement were mitigated as the care home had been managing the relationship to date and a statement of expectations had been agreed and signed.
Read the judgment on the National Archives.
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