Key Issues: Risk assessment is a misleading term. It masks a process that involves the collection of information, judgements about whether risks are likely or not to occur and the severity of the consequences if they do.Whilst practitioners may be able to do little to reduce the elements of risk presented by a service user, they have greater control over how to monitor and influence the outcomes of these through risk management.Risk assessment and management should be a collaborative endeavour including working in partnership with service users and their families.Practitioners should be aware of biased thinking in making judgements about risk and effective interdisciplinary working is one way to challenge these biases.Interdisciplinary working that locates the accountability and responsibility for risk taking within interdisciplinary teams, supported by their organization, should lead to more robust strategies for risk assessment, planning and management.
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