An undercover investigation has been carried out into the alleged abuse at a County Durham care home. Allegations of physical and psychological abuse were made earlier this month and a police investigation was launched into the alleged incidents of abuse at Whorlton Hall.

Whorlton Hall is a specialist hospital that provides care for adults that have learning disabilities and other complex needs that require specialist care. The care home is run by Cygnet Health Care.

Olivia Davies went undercover to obtain the secret footage showing the abuse at the care home. The footage shows how patients with special needs and learning disabilities were provoked deliberately by members of staff at Whorlton Hall and then physically restrained by the staff members. A number of staff have been suspended following the investigation.

In a previous statement, Cygnet Health Care, said: “We take these allegations extremely seriously. We have informed all the relevant authorities, including the Care Quality Commission, NHS commissioning authorities, social workers and the police, who are conducting an investigation. Whorlton Hall is currently closed to new admissions. We have transferred staff from our other facilities to ensure the safe care and protection of the hospital’s patients.”

Jane Robinson, corporate director for adult and health services, sent an email to members of the Council informing them of the programme that will be aired tonight. The email advises that staff should not speak to the media about the allegations until the police investigation is ongoing. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is also investigating the allegations and service provided.

BBC 1 will air the programme tonight at 9pm.


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