Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards


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A definition of depriving someone of their liberty

Someone who is either a patient in hospital or living in a care home and who is unable to give consent to the care or treatment they require may need protection to ensure they don't suffer harm. This may mean restricting their freedom to the point of depriving them of their liberty such as preventing them from leaving the care home or ward to keep them safe.

The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS)

The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DOLS) are part of the Mental Capacity Act 2005. They are designed to protect people in care homes and hospitals from being inappropriately deprived of their liberty.

If you are worried that a person you know may be deprived of their liberty

If a person you know is living in a care home or is a patient in hospital and you have concerns that they are being deprived of their liberty, you should:

  • urgently discuss the person's care plan with the home or ward manager
  • ask the manager to refer the person to the East Sussex DOLS Team
  • contact Adult Social Care Direct: Phone: 0345 60 80 191 / Email: Adult Social Care Direct

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