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Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016

Section 21 - Responsible individuals and Section 22 - cancellation of designation of a responsible individual

68.Sections 7 and 21 taken together require that there must be a person appointed as a responsible individual who is designated by the provider as part of the provider’s registration. Section 21 specifies that the responsible individual must satisfy certain requirements. Subsection (2) requires the responsible individual to be someone of suitable seniority within the company or organisation that is running the service.

69.The responsible individual will also have to be “fit and proper”. The requirements that must be considered by Welsh Ministers in making a decision as to whether a person designated by the service provider as responsible individual is a fit and proper person to be a responsible individual or whether an existing responsible individual continues to be fit and proper are set out in section 9.

70.The responsible individual will have specific responsibilities for the service in respect of which that person is registered. Those duties will be set out in regulations made pursuant to section 28. At the time the service provider applies to be registered, the Welsh Ministers will need to be satisfied that the person designated as responsible individual is capable of performing those duties (see section 7(1)(c)). A responsible individual will need to be able to meet the requirements imposed by regulations under section 28 in relation to the type of service that the individual is to be registered as responsible individual for.

71.Section 21(4) allows the same person to be a responsible individual in respect of more than one place at, from or in relation to which a service is provided. However, this will be possible only if the Welsh Ministers can be satisfied that the person is capable of performing their duties as responsible individual in respect of each place.

72.If an individual does not meet the requirements to be a responsible individual, section 22 gives the Welsh Ministers power to cancel the designation of a responsible individual. The individual is first given an opportunity to rectify things so as to show that he or she is fit to be a responsible individual (see section 22(4)(b)).

73.By way of example, a provider may designate the same person to be the responsible individual in respect of a care home service in Cardiff and a care home service in Bangor. An example of duty that may be placed on the responsible individual in the regulations made pursuant to section 28 is a requirement to supervise the management of the service. The Welsh Ministers may consider that the same person would not be capable of supervising the management at both of those places. If, in the opinion of the Welsh Ministers, the individual is not so capable, then the provider will be required to designate a different individual for each of the places.

74.Using the same example, the Welsh Ministers may decide at the time of first registration that the same individual could demonstrate that they were able to fulfil the requirements in section 21(1) and register that individual as responsible individual in respect of the care home service provided in both Cardiff and Bangor. However, post registration, evidence may come to light that, in fact, the individual was not able to do so. For example, the supervision of the management of the care home service in Cardiff may be satisfactory but not in respect of the service provided in Bangor. The Welsh Ministers could, in accordance with section 22, cancel the registration of the responsible individual in respect of the Bangor care home service, whilst maintaining that individual’s registration as the responsible individual in respect of the Cardiff care home service but they would have to give an improvement notice to the individual to give him or her the chance to rectify things before the Welsh Ministers proceed to cancellation.

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