Health and Social Care in the Thames Valley

The Thames Valley team has the advantage of including, in its Head of Office Derek Jones, a dispute resolution specialist with extensive experience of handling a range of issues in the health and social care sector.

He has acted on behalf of providers in dealing with regulators including the Care Quality Commission (CQC), local authorities and the NHS, and has represented them at tribunals and inquests. He is also a licensed insolvency practitioner solicitor and so is well-placed to advise on cash-flow problems and financial difficulties within the sector, supporting clients in discussions with their funders and stakeholders.

Some of his recent cases include:

  • Advising health and social care providers on safeguarding issues following reaction to the Winterbourne View scandal
  • Resolving disputes with the CQC over the registration of health and social care services, including situations where the regulated services are contracted out to agents rather than to the provider
  • A successful £1million claim against NHS Commissioners for failing to pay sums due under a block bed contract
  • Advising health and social care providers on renegotiation of their contracts with local authority and NHS Commissioners
  • Tackling  CQC Notices of Proposal to cancel the registration of homes in difficulty
  • Advising provider associations on the pitfalls of Judicial Review Applications in relation to the true costs of care
  • Assisting Law of Property Act Receivers in liaising with local authority commissioning and safeguarding teams in relation to pre-appointment problems with the services to which they were appointed
  • Minimising the length of voluntary embargoes by assisting in the agreement of action plans
  • Recovering nearly £100,000 of care fees due to a provider from a single vulnerable resident
  • Assisting on the responses to “factual inaccuracies” in CQC draft inspection reports

He has taken a personal interest in dementia care, medication, mental health awareness, stroke awareness, the safeguarding of vulnerable adults and caring and support for the elderly, as well as care for people with learning difficulties.