§ Mr. Brazier
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will introduce measures further to safeguard the welfare of residents in residential care and nursing homes.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
I have today laid before Parliament regulations made under the Registered Homes Act 1984 that will require applicants for registration in respect of residential care and nursing homes to declare any criminal convictions they may have; and to provide proof of their identity on request. The first of these measures reinforces the administrative arrangements already in place under which authorities are advised to ask applicants about criminal convictions, and the police can be asked to make confirmatory checks against their records. Requiring proof of identity should help ensure applicants do not evade these and other checks by giving a false name.
These new requirements will strengthen the hand of registration authorities and help reduce the already small risk of unsuitable applicants becoming registered under the 1984 Act.