A dementia care centre in Seaford has been deemed to ‘require improvement’ after an unannounced inspection by the Care Quality Commission.
Clifden House, on Claremont Road, was assessed in five categories; is the service safe, is it effective, is it caring, is it responsive and is it well-led. The centre was rated as ‘good’ for care but labelled as ‘requiring improvement’ in each of the four other checks.
The report, which is one of the first in the area to be published following the introduction of the Care Act 2014 on April 1, 2015, praised the centre on a number of aspects.
It stated: “People were cared for by staff that knew them well and responded to their individual needs and preferences. Staff were kind, friendly and patient and mindful of privacy and dignity. The service was clean and well-maintained with safety issues taken into account.”
It also made positive references to safeguarding against abuse, the variety of food available to patients, the systems in place for sharing information and feedback from patients and relatives, with one person stating the centre was ‘better than I ever dreamt it could be’.
However, the CQC found a number of breaches of the Health and Social Care Act 2008. The report listed three aspects where legal requirements were not being met.
One area for improvement was in relation to the management of medicines, with the report stating that ‘medicines were not always managed safely, putting people at risk of not receiving the correct prescribed medicine’.It made reference to one patient who had not received their prescribed medicine for five days.
Another area for improvement related to the handling of complaints, with ‘written and verbal complaints not always responded to in a timely and proactive way’.
Managing director of Clifden House, Nial Joyce, said: “Clifden House has been delivering care in East Sussex for over 40 years, and has specialised in dementia care for nearly half of these.
“Our recent 16-page CQC inspection report, the first under the new reporting standards, rates the service as good for caring. Areas for improvement include liaison between GP’s, pharmacy and the home when medication can be altered daily, and further improving our formal regular supervision of staff. There is not one area in which we are deemed inadequate and there are no actions of enforcement against the home.
“Instead, the report, which is publicly available, comments favourably upon the quality of our trained staff; that they display good caring practices which show that they really know the residents and their preferences; that residents are kept safe from risk and abuse; are engaged with activities both in and out of the home; that their choices and preferences are responded to; that the home is clean and well maintained, and speaks further of an active and engaged environment,. The report also contains many positive comments from families about the home and the care we deliver.
“We care for and protect the most vulnerable in society at Clifden House. We have an open policy of continuous improvement and welcome anything that can ensure we continue to offer the very best in care.
“It is disappointing and dispiriting for our hard working staff that our good and continuous work in providing the very best of care under often difficult and challenging circumstances, has been set aside for a swift report on the recommendations of improvement. We work closely with social services in providing care for clients facing challenging circumstances, as well as for families looking for assistance, and will continue this difficult but ultimately rewarding work, because we are needed.
“Our CQC report is in fact a document to our hard working staff and skilled and caring environment, offering support to society’s most vulnerable, and rising to the challenge. Please read it in full before passing judgement.”
The report can be viewed at www.cqc.org.uk/location/1-152778719.
For information on the centre, visit dementiacarecentre.uk.
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