Rotherham Council's ‘significant’ service failure in support for carer couple

ROTHERHAM Council failed to provide a carer service to a couple with autism and disabilities, an ombudsman review found.
Riverside HouseRiverside House
Riverside House

RMBC has apologised and been ordered to pay £1,000 for falling short when the couple – who are carers for each other – became ill with Covid last year.

They were placed “at risk of harm” because the council failed to find a care service to enable them take a break from their carer roles, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman ruled.

The couple, known as Mr and Mrs B, complained to the council in November 2022, as Mrs B was still waiting for her care plan to be put in place – partly due to a funding dispute between social care and health services.

The couple had a plan in place for the council to provide contingency care should one of them fall ill, and Mrs B requested that this be activated when she fell ill with Covid on November 7.

However, the couple were told that the council’s reablement team had “no capacity”, and the NHS could only provide care for two days.

Mr and Mrs B did not receive the support to spend time apart until May 2023, which the ombudsman said was a “significant service failure”.

A council spokesperson said: “The council has implemented the recommended remedies from the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman’s decision in this case.

“We apologise to those affected for not fully addressing their health and care needs at the time.

“Our commitment remains steadfast, as we actively support individuals in meeting their health and care requirements.”