Community Services and Long-Term Care: Issues of Negligence and Liability. Preventive Law Checklist

01/01/1982

The following is a checklist of questions an agency should address to protect itself, its employees and agents against exposure to liability. Much of it represents a common sense approach to agency management.

  • Does the agency carry liability insurance for itself, its employees, its agents and its volunteers?
  • If not, has this been explored with the agency’s insurance broker or community health and welfare planning council in its area?
  • Does the agency bond its employees, volunteers or agents against losses from theft or embezzlement?
  • Does the agency have formal training programs with proper procedure manuals or other documents appropriate to the tasks and duties of service workers, volunteers and agents?
  • Does the agency have appropriate review protocols and procedures necessary to monitor direct service tasks and duties of service workers, volunteers and agents?
  • Does the agency have procedures and written materials that provide necessary information for clients, families and helpers who participate in care and services?
  • Does the agency have procedures and criteria for involving specialists or making referrals when problems arise that are beyond the competence of agency staff, volunteers or agents?
  • Does the agency have systematic quality control mechanisms to check on the quality of services provided by agency staff, volunteers or agents?
  • Does the agency have review mechanisms to assess quality of services provided by family or by the client where self-care is part of the care plan?
  • Does the agency have procedures for assessing medication and treatment compliance when such are the responsibility of agency staff, volunteers or agents?
  • Does the agency have a procedure to periodically review consents received from clients?
  • Does the agency have clearly understood procedures for emergency care and subsequent reassessment?

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