Residents’ safety was ‘compromised’ at Bognor care home

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A care home in Bognor put its residents at risk according to a recent Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection.

The report of an unannounced comprehensive inspection, published on Christmas Day, stated that Homebeech Care Home in Stocker Road was ‘inadequate’ in safety, whilst it ‘requires improvement’ in effectiveness, care, responsiveness and leadership.

Homebeech provides accommodation and nursing care for up to 66 people with a variety of health conditions, including dementia, physical disability and frailties of old age.

The care home had been found to ‘require improvement’ after inspections in 2016 and 2017 and was issued three warning notices.

The latest inspections was on June 19 and 26 and September 25, 2018.

At the time, the registered manager had only been in post about two weeks before the first day of the inspection, according to the report, which also noted that there were 50 people living in the service, all requiring varying levels of support.

The inspection summary read: “In February 2016, we undertook a comprehensive inspection of this service and found breaches of regulations in relation to safe care and treatment, dignity and respect and person-centred care.

“We asked the provider to submit an action plan on how they would address these breaches. An action plan was submitted which identified the steps that would be taken.

“We found the provider had not sustained improvements and were in breach of regulations.”

The report said that care ‘was not personalised to the individual’.

It added: “People’s safety was sometimes being compromised as people commented they had to wait for care and assistance.

“People told us that they were happy with the care [but] people’s preferences were not followed when they had personal care. For example, people did not always receive assistance getting into bed at the time they wished.

“People were not able to express their views and had limited opportunity to feedback about the service they received.”

The report also said that inspectors ‘could not see’ that activities were ‘routinely organised’ for everybody or for people who remained in their rooms.

It added: “Staff did not engage socially with people, due to the care delivery being task centred. We observed occasions when people were ignored by staff.”

When staff were recruited, their employment history was not always completely checked and valid references were not always obtained, according to the report.

“Recruitment checks did not ensure new staff were safe to work within the care sector,” the report read.

The report did acknowledge there were ‘some arrangements in place’ to meet people’s social and recreational needs and in response to the previous inspection, the service now employed a part-time activities co-ordinator.

It added: “Accidents and incidents were recorded appropriately. Risks associated with the environment and equipment had been identified.

“Emergency procedures were in place in the event of fire. There was a nurse who was responsible for managing an evacuation in the event of a fire. However, they had not received any training specific to the geography of the building.”

Although, despite noting that medicines were ‘stored safely’, in accordance with current regulations and guidance, the report said that they were not always given ‘in line with safe practice’.

“Medicines prescribed to be taken ‘as required’ were not given in accordance with people’s needs,” it read.

“People were not always enabled or encouraged to eat and drink well. Special diets were not always adequately catered for.

“We have made a recommendation about staff training on the subject of meeting people’s nutritional needs.”

Homebeech declined to comment when approached by the Observer.

See also: Care home in Bognor ‘did not always treat the people in its care with dignity and respect’