Adult Practice Reviews (APRs)
In accordance with The Safeguarding Boards (Functions and Procedures) (Wales) Regulations 2015, Regional Safeguarding Adults Boards have a statutory responsibility to undertake multi-agency Adult Practice Reviews in circumstances of a significant incident where abuse or neglect of an adult at risk is known or suspected.
The prime purpose of practice reviews, as defined in The Safeguarding Boards (Functions and Procedures) (Wales) Regulations 2015, is to identify any steps that can be taken by Safeguarding Board partners or other bodies to achieve improvements in multi-agency adult protection practice.
While reviews may vary in their breadth and complexity they should be completed in a timely manner. Lessons learned from practice reviews should be disseminated effectively and any recommendation arising should be implemented promptly so that the changes required result wherever possible, in adults at risk being protected from suffering or harm in the future. Where possible lessons should be acted upon without necessarily waiting for the completion of the review.
Practice reviews are not inquiries into how an adult at risk died or was seriously harmed, or into who is culpable. These are matters for coroners and criminal courts, respectively to determine as appropriate.
In accordance with Welsh Government guidance, Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014 – Working Together to Safeguard People Volume 3 – Adult Practice Reviews, there are two types of review. Please see below for the criteria for undertaking each type of review.
Criteria for undertaking a Concise Review
A Safeguarding Board must undertake a concise adult practice review where an adult at risk who has not, on any date during the 6 months preceding the date of the event, been a person in respect of whom a local authority has determined to take action to protect them from abuse or neglect following an enquiry by a local authority, and has:
- Died; or
- Sustained potentially life threatening injury; or
- Sustained serious and permanent impairment of health.
Criteria for undertaking an Extended Review
A Board must undertake an extended adult practice review where an adult at risk who has, on any date during the 6 months preceding the date of the event, been a person in respect of whom a local authority has determined to take action to protect them from abuse or neglect following an enquiry by a local authority, and has;
- died; or
- sustained a potentially life threatening injury; or
- sustained serious and permanent impairment of health.
Serious case reviews
In Wales before the introduction of Regional Safeguarding Boards in 2013, local arrangements were in place for carrying out Serious Case Reviews/Internal Management Reviews.
Wales Guidance for conducting a Serious Case Review can be found in Appendix 2 of the Wales Interim Policy & Procedures for the Protection of Vulnerable Adults from Abuse (2010, updated January 2013).
This process has now been superceded by Adult Practice Reviews in Wales.