Sometimes individuals may want to do something which could be a risk to their Health and safety. As a carer you have a duty of care to that person and you must do all that you can to keep them safe but you also have a duty to respect the individuals rights and choice, so you have a dilemma. It could be that the individual no longer wishes to use her walking frame, but her care plan states that she needs it to move from place to place and you are to ensure you encourage it’s use. In this scenario you could carry out a risk assessment to ensure that it is managed as safely as possible. You would need to explain the risks involved to the individual and make sure they understand. You could come to a compromise, to use a stick for a while instead, to see how they managed, then monitor the situation. All this should be documented including any risk assessment carried out. If the individual still insists on walking unaided you should get them to sign to say they are aware of the risks involved. Another scenario could be that an individual refuses their medication. Remind them of why they take the medication and it’s benefits and again advise them of the risks involved in not taking their medication. If they still refuse ensure this is noted on their Medication administration record and reported in their communication notes and discussed at handover, so others aware if a problem occurs. If the individual insists on doing something which is unsafe or risky that is their choice and you must respect their right, but you have a duty of care and must do all you can to keep them safe d an individual’s rights.
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