Walker care home in special measures after whistleblowers alerted CQC to failings

Ella McCambridge Care Home, in Walker, has been put into special measures after whistleblowers alerted the CQC to failings. Credit: Google

A care home has been put into special measures due to failures in looking after its residents.

Ella McCambridge Care Home, in Walker, was rated as inadequate by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), following a visit by the watchdog's inspectors.

Anonymous complaints had led to the CQC making an unannounced inspection in January.

There had been concerns about people’s care and support, infection control and the management of the home. 

The home in Winslow Place, which had previously been rated as good, was caring for 47 people at the time of the inspection.

The overall rating dropped to inadequate and its ratings for being safe, effective and well-led have also dropped from good to inadequate.

The home’s ratings for being caring and responsive to people’s needs dropped from good to requires improvement. 

Alison Chilton, CQC deputy director of operations in the north, said: “At the time of our inspection of Ella McCambridge Care Home, we found that the service wasn’t well-led, which was impacting on all areas of the care people who were living there received.

"Our experience tells us that when a service isn’t well-led, it is more unlikely they’re able to meet people’s needs in the other areas we inspect, which is what we found here.  

“However, a recent change in leadership at the home has left staff and relatives feeling more confident in its future. The new leaders are focused on improving training and overall standards of care.  

“At the time of inspection, we found risk assessments and records to ensure the safety of people using or visiting the service, weren’t up to date and didn’t fully reflect people’s needs. We also found these important documents didn’t provide enough guidance to staff on actions they should take to minimise risk to people. 

“People weren’t supported to make their own choices, live in the least restrictive way possible or in their best interests.This is unacceptable. 

“Following our inspection, we reported our findings to the provider so they know what they must address.  

“We will return to inspect the home. If sufficient progress has not been made, we’ll not hesitate to take further action to ensure people’s safety and wellbeing.” 

The CQC said the home's leaders were open and honest during the inspection about the improvements that were required, and they were developing an action plan to address the issues identified.

Vanessa Cutler, operations manager for the Manor Care Home Group, said she and her operational manager had not been fully aware of concerns with previous management until January. New management is now in place.

She added the company was seeking funding to digitise records for the future and staff training was up to date.

She added: "We are dedicated to our homes and this has been a huge shock to all the staff but also lessons learnt from everyone involved, we have had meeting with residents and their families and been open and honest about the last few months and had very good feedback.

"My operations assistant manager and myself are working alongside the new appointed manager and the staff to assure everyone we are doing everything possible to get the home back to where it should be. A robust action plan has been devised and implemented with immediate effect and all staff are working to the best of their ability to complete these actions."

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