County council’s homes for older people pass inspections with flying colours

PIC BY ESME ALLEN FOR STOCK'Nurse in a care home talking to an elderly woman in a wheelchair'PENSIONS, PENSIONERS, POVERTY, OLD, AGEING, POOR, BENIFITS, SOCIAL SECURITY, CARING, DISABLED, CAREERS, VOLUNTEERS, HOUSING, RETIREMENT
PIC BY ESME ALLEN FOR STOCK'Nurse in a care home talking to an elderly woman in a wheelchair'PENSIONS, PENSIONERS, POVERTY, OLD, AGEING, POOR, BENIFITS, SOCIAL SECURITY, CARING, DISABLED, CAREERS, VOLUNTEERS, HOUSING, RETIREMENT
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“Excellent”, “brilliant” and “lovely” are just some of the compliments paid to staff who work in the county council’s residential homes for older people during recent inspections.

During the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) unannounced inspections, the CQC assessed each home on a range of measures. All seventeen of the county council’s homes were rated as being 100% fully compliant with the CQC’s assessment criteria.

The county council has homes for older people across the whole of Lancashire with at least one in each district.

The homes provide residential care for older people and specialise in their work with people with dementia.

Six of the homes provide a specialised unit providing a six-week rehabilitation programme for people leaving hospital before they return home.

Tony Martin, Lancashire County Council’s cabinet member for adult and community services, said:

“I’d firstly like to thank all the staff in our care homes whose dedication and hard work have been rightly recognised in the CQC’s inspection reports.

“Every resident who was interviewed said they had a good relationship with the staff and confirmed their rights to privacy, dignity and independence were always respected.

“In addition to the CQC inspections, the homes have also achieved the Customer Service Excellence award.

“This is a government standard awarded across the country. This too is an excellent achievement.

“This kind of external recognition for quality and customer care are important in building and maintaining public confidence.”

On the catering in the homes, residents were also very positive.

People told inspectors they enjoyed the food provided.

One person said “The meals are lovely” and another commented “The food is very good”. The meals were well presented and looked appetising.

Catering in the homes is managed by the county council’s Catering Services.

All meals are cooked on site using traditional recipes based on suggestions and choices of the residents.

Ingredients are locally sourced and menus have been nutritionally analysed.

We have recently introduced crockery specifically designed to help people with disabilities and dementia.

County Councillor Martin was pleased the inspection reports and noted the high quality training on offer to managers and staff:

“We make sure all of the homes’ managers also attend specialised training provided by Bradford University to enable them to carry out a process called “Dementia Mapping”.

“This enables teams to understand how to improve the life of someone with dementia and helps us to understand the people who live in the home better.

“For the staff, there are established systems in place to ensure they all receive regular training, which includes safe people handling, medication, fire safety, first aid, health and safety, safeguarding, and infection control.”

On the general environment in the homes, the CQC report acknowledges that the county council has invested in improvements.

For example, redecorating and reflooring have been designed in accordance with best practice to help residents with dementia to move around more easily.

Paint schemes have also been chosen so that residents can easily identify doorways, bathrooms and flooring.

A new set of brochures outlining the services and facilities on offer has been delivered to each of the homes.