The Graded Care Profile - a tool for assessing neglect

Introduction

The Graded Care Profile (GCP) was developed as a practical tool to give an objective measure of the care of children across all areas of need by Drs. Polnay and Srivastava.  The profile was developed to provide an indication of care on a graded scale. It is important from the point of view of objectivity because the ill effect of bad care in one area may be offset by good care in another area. It has been adapted to meet the needs of Salford, but the quality of the original version is acknowledged.

It is a descriptive scale. The grades indicate quality of care and are recorded using the same 1 to 5 scale in all areas. Instead of giving a diagnosis of neglect it defines the care showing both strengths and weaknesses as the case may be. It provides a unique reference point. Changes after intervention can demonstrably be monitored in both positive and negative directions.

It can be used to improve understanding about the level of concern and to target areas of work as it highlights areas of greater risk of poorer outcomes. It should be used in all cases where neglect is identified as an issue. The Profile can be used with the family by individual workers, or groups of workers, to inform Family Action meetings and child protection Core Group meetings.

Neglect procedures at the Family Action level can be viewed.

A Risk and Protective Factors tool is available, which can help identify children at risk of poorer outcomes.

Finally it should be remembered that it provides a measure of care as it is actually delivered irrespective of other interacting factors. In some situations where conduct and personality of one of the parents is of grave concern, a good care profile on its own should not be used to dismiss that fact. At present it brings the issue of care to the fore for consideration in the context of overall assessment.

This page was last updated on 3 October 2009

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