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Concern as three Accrington care homes rated 'requires improvement'

The homes said they are taking necessary steps following Care Quality Commission inspections

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Church View care home, Princess Street, Accrington.

Concerns have been raised after three Hyndburn care homes were criticised by a watchdog.

The homes, in Accrington, have all been rated as ‘requires improvement’ after visits from watchdog the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Among the homes in question are Belvedere, on Wellington Street, and Addison Court, on Addison Street.

The third, Church View, on Princess Street, had been subject to complaints of abuse and neglect prior to June’s inspection, many of which were substantiated upon investigation.

All three homes say they are making the necessary improvements and take the CQC reports seriously.

Lancashire County Council (LCC) is the local authority whose remit covers care homes and it funds some places for elderly people.

Councillor Munsif Dad

Hyndburn borough councillor Munsif Dad, cabinet member for health, said: “It is a very important issue, we have to ensure care provided is consistent. It is a cause for concern.

“If places have been identified I would look at ways we can help and support Lancashire County Council. These issues can be raised at scrutiny meetings.”

Prior to Church View’s inspection, complaints included workers sleeping on duty, going for breaks together and staff being rough.

While inspectors found action had been taken to deal with these issues, other breaches of regulations regarding safety of care and monitoring of services were uncovered.

Addison Court was inspected in June and had improved from its previous visit in terms of staffing levels but was found to use too many agency workers.

Belvedere had progressed from its previous inspection rating of inadequate, but its auditing and monitoring still fell short of requirements when visited in May.

County councillor Graham Gooch, LCC’s cabinet member for adult services, said ensuring people’s safety is their main priority.

He said: “We have a statutory duty to look at homes that are failing and help.

“Where there are persistent problems we can stop sending people there. It is a concern but it is being tackled by the CQC.”

He added: “The standard of care homes in Hyndburn is generally good. We’re currently working with managers at Church View, Belvedere and Addison Court Care Homes to help them address the issues highlighted in the inspection reports.”

Regulations breached three times

A nursing home that had ‘caused numerous complaints relating to abuse and neglect’ was found to have breached care regulations three times.

Church View, in Accrington, has been graded as requires improvement following a Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection.

A report, published this month, said troubles for the home began before June’s visit.

It said: “We had received numerous complaints, whistle blowings and safeguarding concerns relating to abuse and neglect.

“Following investigation by the local safeguarding authority, many of the concerns and complaints had been substantiated.”

Complaints included staff sleeping on duty and taking breaks together, residents not receiving enough support with personal hygiene and staff being rough.

Prior to the inspection the home had suspended new admissions while these issues were sorted.

And the registered manager of the home had stepped down to be replaced by a general manager who, it was said, had begun to address and improve these issues.

But the report still stated three breaches of the regulations were found, relating to a failure to provide safe care and treatment, a failure to monitor and improve the service and a failure to notify the CQC of events that had taken place.

It added: “We are considering what action to take.”

The home, on Princess Street, was also graded across five categories and said to be inadequate in one - how well led it was.

Four other categories - safety, care, responsiveness and effectiveness - were judged as requires improvement.

Parts of the report praised Church View, saying residents described staff as kind and caring to inspectors. General hygiene standards, staff inductions and infection control were said to be good.

Julie Hammond, general manager, said: “We’re obviously very disappointed with our inspection report. This unfortunately reflected the very challenging and difficult times we faced.

“We are working closely with the CQC, council and clinical commissioning groups, to make the necessary improvements as quickly as possible.

“We take comfort from the very positive comments and assure all residents and family we’ll do whatever it takes to improve.”

‘Still needs to do better’

Addison Court, in Accrington

Concerns over the use of agency staff and unsafe practices with medication mean a care home in Accrington still needs to improve.

Addison Court, on Addison Street, was visited by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in June and despite having some good features was rated as requires improvement.

The inspection follows a previous visit in February where the home was given the same grading but also served with a warning notice.

It related to concerns there were insufficient staff ‘to meet the needs of people living at the home’.

There were also breaches of legal requirements regarding infection control.

According to the CQC report it was found improvements had been made but fresh issues were discovered.

These included a high use of agency staff, care plans not being ‘person-centred’ and prescribed medicines not always being administered as directed.

The CQC rated the home as requires improvement for safety, responsiveness and leadership but as good for care and effectiveness.

Praise was given for staff being ‘kind and sensitive’ and meal time options.

A spokesman for the home said: “We take the report seriously and have put in place a robust and comprehensive plan to address the matters raised.

“Senior managers continue to work closely with all stakeholders to ensure that we deliver the high standard of care our residents and their relatives expect.”

‘Improvements are now in place’

Belvedere Care Home, Accrington

Inspectors visited a care home for the second time in two months to find it was still in breach of regulations.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated Belvedere Care Home, in Accrington, as ‘requires improvement’ and said auditing and monitoring of its services fell short of requirements.

It had visited in May this year after a previous inspection in March graded the home as inadequate. Inspectors found improvements such as better risk assessments and upgraded training and support for staff.

The CQC report also said care plans were now more detailed, although there was still no evidence of patient involvement. And an audit form had been drawn up but it had yet to be used at the time of the inspection.

It was said the new measures needed time to be fully embedded and maintain standards.

Belvedere, on Wellington Street, was also graded as requires improvement in more detailed categories of care, safety, effectiveness, responsiveness and leadership.

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Francesca Windsor, the registered manager, said: “We are continuing to improve, as the CQC said. Everything it suggested to improve has been improved and everything is in place.”