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Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards: Annual Monitoring Report for Health and Social Care 2017-18

A joint report between ourselves and Healthcare Inspectorate Wales.

This is the ninth annual monitoring report on the operations of the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) in Wales.

What is a deprivation of liberty?

A deprivation of liberty is:

  • when a person is under continuous or complete supervision and control, and
  • is not free to leave, and
  • lacks capacity to consent to these arrangements

What are the Safeguards?

The Safeguards exist to empower and protect any individual with mental disorder, where there is doubt about their mental capacity, to make informed decisions about their care when they are hospital patients, or residents in a care home.


There was an increase in the number of DoLS applications received by Health Boards and Local Authorities with the majority of individuals who are subject to DoLS being female and over the age of 65.

Roughly half of Standard DoLS applications and two thirds of Urgent applications did not receive a decision within the timescale required by statutory timescales; the proportion being assessed has improved since last year.

For all applications, the average length of time between receiving an application form and a decision being made was 83 days.

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