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New figures on Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards released

NHS Digital has released new figures on Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) for care homes and hospitals.

NHS Digital has released new figures on Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) for care homes and hospitals.

Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards are applications made by care homes and hospitals to local authorities1, that independently assess the care provided to people who lack the mental capacity to consent to the arrangements, where that care deprives them of their liberty2.

The Mental Capacity Act 2005, Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards, England 2018-19 report provides information regarding DoLS applications, including the numbers received by local authorities through the year, the number completed by local authorities during that year and the number authorised.

There is also information on the demographic profile of people for whom an application was made; an analysis of the length of the application process; and the duration, both proposed and actual, of the authorisations that were granted. 

Further analysis of the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards data is available at local, regional and national levels, on request.


Read the full report

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Notes for editors

  1. Where the local authorities are councils with adult social services responsibility (CASSRs)

  2. A Supreme Court judgment of 19 March 2014 in the case of Cheshire West clarified an “acid test” for what constitutes a “deprivation of liberty”. It states that an individual is deprived of their liberty for the purposes of Article 5 of the European Convention on Human Rights if they:

    • lack the capacity to consent to their care / treatment arrangements
    • are under continuous supervision and control
    • are not free to leave

    All three elements must be present for the acid test to be met.

  3. NHS Digital is the national information and technology partner of the health and care system.  Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals depend.  During the 2018/19 financial year, NHS Digital published 265 statistical reports. Our vision is to harness the power of information and technology to make health and care better.

Last edited: 11 December 2019 4:10 pm