Let the people speak

Staff pic   para epaulettes

Occasions when there is no need to make a SPOC referral for Social Care or Child in Need. Your safeguarding team want to encourage you to talk to those present when you attend calls and save yourself time that would have been spent making a referral.

This is part of the drive to work to our values, to work with our patients and their families, empowering them to seek solutions to their issues where able, and minimising the demands on frontline crews.

If there is another adult with capacity at the call, a ‘responsible adult’, and you feel a referral to adult social care or to children’s services for help is required, please talk to the other adult who is often a spouse or family member, are they able to make the referral themselves and speed up the response to the need? Is the patient able to refer themselves? If yes, no need for you to refer please just record that you have had the conversation. 

Police on scene
Ask them if they are making an adult/child safeguarding referral if there is evidence  that meets safeguarding eligibility criteria. If YES, no need for you to make another referral, note that you had conversation with Police and they are referring.

Social worker on scene
If someone from Children’s Services or Adult Social Care is on scene, there is no need to make a referral, they are on scene and aware

Border Force
If Border Force have called you to attend to persons they have detained, there is no need to make an Adult referral, as Border Force deal with any health/social care as part of their detention process. Please still refer any children (there are multiple reasons why children’s referrals still need to go through).


  • If you do make a referral to Adult Social Care consent is needed, Adult safeguarding consent is required, unless there is coercion, another adult with care and support needs is at risk.
  • Children in Need referrals require consent from a child aged 13 + or a responsible adult, with Children’s safeguarding parental consent should be sought, but if unable to gain consent or no consent, a referral can still be made to prevent greater risk to the child(ren).

Mental Capacity
If you are making a referral for someone who does not have capacity you must carry out a Capacity Assessment and make a best interest decision. If other people are present, please check if any of them have Lasting Power of Attorney for Health, and can make the decision instead of you.

Published 24th February 2020

Leave a Comment
Name (required)
Email Address (required, never displayed)
Enter a message

(all comments are moderated - your submission will be posted on approval.)