Consultation outcome

Wilful neglect or ill-treatment in health and social care

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

This consultation has concluded

Download the full outcome

Detail of outcome

Over 130 responses to this consultation have been received, and there is broad support for each of the proposals put forward. The outcome of the consultation exercise is that the offence will apply to:

  • all formal healthcare provision for adults and children in both the NHS and private sector. It will not apply to some children’s settings and services which are subject to existing safeguards
  • all formal adult social care provision, in both the public and private sectors, including self-funded care
  • people and organisations paid to provide or arrange for the provision of these health and adult social care services, but the offence for organisations will be formulated in a different way to the offense for individuals

The offences will not apply to:

  • the provision of any non-health children’s services (eg children’s social care)
  • informal caring arrangements where the care is not given as part of paid work
  • situations that are the result of a genuine accident or error
  • any areas other than health care or adult social care
  • health care provided for children or adults in some specified settings or services, such as schools or children’s homes

The consultation response document provides further detail. It also includes a full summary of all the responses received and information on the timetable for legislating for the new offences.

Original consultation


Seeks views on the details of a new criminal offence of ill-treatment or wilful neglect of users of health and social care services.

This consultation ran from

Consultation description

As part of the response to the Francis Report, the government accepted the recommendation of the National Advisory Group on the Safety of Patients in England to develop a new criminal offence of ill-treatment or wilful neglect.

This consultation outlines the recommendation and the government’s current position, and sets out our proposals for the details of the offence.


New criminal offence of ill-treatment or wilful neglect impact assessment

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Published 27 February 2014
Last updated 11 June 2014 + show all updates
  1. Added the government response to the consultation on ill-treatment or wilful neglect in health and social care
  2. First published.