BBC Panorama

Last night, like many other people in the UK, I sat and watched the well-trailed BBC Panorama programme ‘Behind Closed Doors’.
I, like I expect everyone else who watched the programme, was not just disgusted by what was done to some older, vulnerable people, but was personally saddened and emotionally touched by what I saw.   I cannot begin to understand how one human being can treat another in this way, but clearly for a few people, to treat others in that way is acceptable.
The reality is that however good an organisation’s processes, procedures, training and monitoring is, a very small number of people will do things that, for the vast majority of society, are unquestionably wrong.
As a leader in the care industry, I was impressed by those staff who reported the abuse – it took courage to do so.  At MHA we try to have as many ways as possible open for staff, relatives and residents to make their views known, in whichever way they feel most comfortable.  And we always act on anything that is reported because I and my colleagues are passionate about treating others, especially the most frail and vulnerable, with the dignity we wish for ourselves.  That’s not a guarantee that we will never get it wrong; I cannot promise that.  But I can promise that we will always listen to any concern from anyone and will take prompt and appropriate action to address any occasion where we have not been the best that we can be.
For the thousands of people that are in care homes in the UK, most live in good quality homes with excellent care and support from dedicated staff; I know that first-hand as I visit many of our schemes in MHA.  I want to celebrate that and thank not only MHA’s staff, but others in the sector who do one of the hardest jobs there is, day in day out, with wonderful compassionate care and respect for each individual.  It would be nice if that made the news sometimes too.

Adrian Bagg

Group Chief Executive

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