Attendees at the recent Adult Protection Committee Annual Seminar

Adult Protection Committee Seminar focuses on tackling self-neglect


This month our Adult Support and Protection Team hosted the pan-Ayrshire Adult Protection Committee Annual Seminar.

The event, which took place at the Auchinleck Boswell Centre, aimed to provide a deeper understanding of self-neglect and its complexities, including ways in which our health and care services can tackle it more effectively across Ayrshire.

The event was opened by Susan Maguire, Chair of East Ayrshire Adult Protection Committee, and featured presentations by Laura Thompson (Senior Health Improvement Programme Officer), Donna Sinforiani (East Ayrshire Adult Protection Lead) and Caroleann MacLellan (Alcohol and Drugs Partnership Development Officer).

Attendees first heard from Laura, who discussed the characteristics, consequences and risk factors associated with self-neglect:

“A lot of the time a person might begin to self neglect because they’re isolated. After this they might not want to see people out of a sense of shame. We need to be able to identify risk factors for self-neglect as quickly as possible. As practitioners we want to be helping people before they need help.”

This presentation was followed by Donna, who highlighted the importance of person-centred support when it comes to helping people out of harm and self-neglect:

“We want people at risk of harm to be safer as a result of what we do. However, we want them to be safer in a way that’s on their terms. We don’t want to be interfering.”

Finally, attendees heard from Caroleann, who spoke about the Holly Health self-care app and developing digital connections to tackle self-neglect:

“Holly Health is an intelligent health coaching app which encourages users and increases their confidence in managing their own conditions before they reach a crisis point. It can also help people to maintain their recovery and avoid relapsing.”


Many thanks to all who took part in organising, delivering and catering at this event and to everyone who attended.

This year’s seminar facilitated meaningful conversation around the complex social issue of self-neglect and what we can all do to better recognise, understand and prevent it in our communities.