Anyone who watched the documentary about Whorlton Hall, broadcast by the BBC last week, will have been nothing short of horrified at the maltreatment of patients in its care. Our Durham Polygraph Examiner took a closer look at what could have happened to prevent it.
This was a facility to temporarily home patients with severe learning disabilities for therapy. As a result of the Panorama documentary it has now closed and 10 care staff members have been arrested.
In the footage many of the patients were seen to be psychologically and physically abused. The full horror can be seen below and we warn viewers that it is upsetting to say the least. You will see patients being intimidated, mocked and taunted repeatedly.
The facility is owned by American Cygnet Health Care and it appears that the NHS contracted their services to provide therapy for these most vulnerable of people. Since the broadcast, Caroline Dinenage the Health Minister has issued an apology on behalf of the NHS.
A BBC journalist was able to obtain the footage by gaining employment at the unit for 2 months. She worked alongside carers who treated patients with derision calling them derogatory names and in some cases psychologically torturing them.
Whilst the CQC (Care Quality Commission), the body responsible for monitoring standards of care, also apologised, it isn’t the first time that they have failed to identify abuse in these types of facilities. Almost daily, we are seeing glaring headlines about abuse in the Care Industry. Something clearly needs to change.
Invitation to Cygnet Health Care
After the documentary aired we wrote to Cygnet Health Care inviting them to discuss how polygraph services can prevent incidents like these occurring in the future. We have to date not received a reply. We find this somewhat surprising as the reputation of a health care provider stands and falls on the quality of its service. Most businesses are open to discussion as to how they can improve their service. Are we to conclude that a health care provider just doesn’t care?
As an American provider, Cygnet Health Care should be well aware of the use of lie detector tests used in the pre-employment screening process. They should know that no matter how glowing the references are for a candidate and how impressive their CV may be nothing gives a greater insight into character than a polygraph examination.
One might wonder how a BBC reporter managed to obtain employment at Whorlton Hall without the company knowing she was a reporter. However, everyone who watched her documentary will be very happy that she did including the family members of patients.
Durham Polygraph Examiner
All our polygraph examiners are fully qualified forensic psychologists and conduct lie detector tests for a broad client base. Smart health care providers not only use polygraph services for pre-employment screening but also for periodic screening of existing staff. In this way they retain the very best and most qualified carers and nurses.
We extend our invitation again to Cygnet Health Care to talk to us. You surely know it makes sense.