The Public Defender of Rights

Protection of Persons Restricted in their Freedom

Social Care Institutions

Visits and activities in 2009

Homes for people with disabilities

The Defender chose homes for persons with disabilities (hereinafter also “homes” or “facilities”) for the period from January to June 2009. These represent social service facilities in the sense of Section 48 of the Social Services Act (Act No. 108/2006 Coll., as amended). The unannounced visits lasting one or two days, concentrating on homes whose target group consisted of persons with mental or combined disabilities, particularly clients up to 26 years of age.

An inpatient social service is provided in homes for people with disabilities on the basis of a social service contract. The latter is concluded either by the clients themselves or by their legal representatives if the clients are minors or restricted in their legal capacity. The clients in almost all of the facilities visited were entirely dependent on assistance from another individual (84% clients of the facilities visited were officially recognised as dependent on the assistance of another individual in degree III or IV).

The Defender invited on the visits experts including quality inspectors, specialist teachers and selected heads of service providers. 25 facilities were selected for the visits. The table below shows the facilities visited by the employees of the Office. Facilities in both Bohemia and Moravia were visited, both large and small. Most of the homes were founded by the regions.

People age 26 or under made up about 34% of occupants of the homes visited. As for children, the Defender was interested to learn about their chances for placement in foster care. He therefore addressed the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and regional authorities with a request that they provide information on the number of children kept in homes for people with disabilities included in the list of children suitable for foster care. The regional authorities stated in an overwhelming majority of cases that it is very difficult to find a foster family for children with mental disabilities. If the child is kept in foster care records, foster care rather than adoption is usually concerned.

The Defender paid special attention during the visits to care for clients with heavier, often combined, forms of disabilities for whom so-called nursing departments are established. The Defender inquired how often these clients spend time outside their bed/department, what activities/stimuli are offered to them, etc. The Defender inquired whether these clients are approached only in terms of their physiological needs (a severely disabled person should not spend all day in bed, his/her activities should change and his/her environment should support the ability to perform daily rituals if s/he is capable of performing them).

Since the Defender, in spite of all the negative findings given below, also found many examples of good practice and truly good care, he newly included these specific examples of good practice in his Report from Visits to Homes for People with Disabilities in order to encourage service providers and bring proofs that the recommended conditions can be achieved.

Private homes for elderly people

Systematic visits to six private homes for elderly people that are registered as social service providers pursuant to the Social Services Act (Act No. 108/2006 Coll., as amended) were made in late 2008 and early 2009. The following facilities were visited: home with special regime Sanatorium Lotos, s.r.o. in Ostředek, Lada home for elderly people in Ostrava, charity home of St. Zdislava in Litoměřice, Dům naděje home for elderly people in Brno, Nemocnice Počátky s.r.o. hospital in Počátky and Prácheňské sanatorium o.p.s., in Bosňany.

It can be generally stated that the homes for elderly people visited had not yet introduced all the measures that are required for fulfi lment of the quality standards under the Social Services Act.


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