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CQC warns Charing Gardens Limited that it is failing to protect the safety and welfare of people

10 September 2012
Charing House
Charing Gardens Limited
  • Media,
  • Care homes without nursing,
  • Care homes with nursing

7 September 2012

Urgent improvements required at Charing House, Gillingham.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has issued a formal warning to Charing Gardens Limited that it must make urgent improvements at a care home in Gillingham, Kent.

Five warning notices have been issued following an inspection of Charing House, in Canterbury Street, in June.

Inspectors found that:

  • Although people’s individual needs were assessed, care and treatment was not planned and provided in line with those assessments. Care plans were not being followed, and staff could not easily access information about people living in the home. Handovers were carried out verbally and did not give clear guidance on care requirements.
  • There was not an effective system in place to identify, assess and manage risks to people living in the home. Checks on quality of care were irregular, and where shortfalls were identified little or no action appeared to have been taken to drive improvements.
  • There was no evidence that people were being actively involved in decisions about their care and treatment. Care plans had not always been signed by people or their representatives. Privacy and dignity was not always respected, and the environment in the dementia unit did not support the dignity of people living there. People with dementia were not supported to make informed choices about the food that they ate.
  • Not enough qualified, skilled and experienced staff were on duty to meet people’s complex individual needs. Staff acknowledged that staffing levels meant people’s needs were not always met, and some people at the home had complained that their needs were not being met due to lack of staff. Staffing arrangements were not planned adequately or based on an assessment of the support people needed.
  • Care records were inaccurate and not fit for purpose, and were not stored in a way which made them quickly accessible when required.

Ian Biggs, Deputy Director of CQC in the South, said:

“The standards of quality and safety in care that CQC checks are those that the law says everyone should expect. These standards exist to protect vulnerable people – who cannot always speak up for themselves - being put at risk of harm. Providers have a duty to be compliant.

“The failings at Charing House are very serious and require immediate attention. We have issued formal warnings against five of the essential standards, and have told the home to resolve the issues fast or face further action.

“Our inspectors will return in the near future to carry out another inspection. If we find that the home is not making the required progress we won’t hesitate to use our legal powers further to protect the people who live there.”


For further information please contact the CQC press office on 0207 448 9239 or out of hours on 07917 232143.

Notes to Editors

The warning notice finds that Charing Gardens Limited is in breach of:

  • Regulation 9 (1)(a)(b)(i)(ii) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 (Outcome 4) Care and welfare of people
  • Regulation 10 (1)(a)(b) (2)(a)(b)(i)(iii)(iv)(v)(c)(i)(e) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 (Outcome 16) Assessing and monitoring the quality of service provision
  • Regulation 17 (1)(a)(b) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 (Outcome 1) Respecting and involving people
  • Regulation 20(1)(a)(2)(a) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 (Outcome 21) Records
  • Regulation 22 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2010 (Outcome 13) Staffing

CQC issued warning notices requiring the provider to take action to meet the regulatory requirements by 7 September 2012. CQC has a range of enforcement powers which include restricting the services that a provider can offer, or, in the most serious cases, suspending or cancelling a service. CQC can also issue financial penalty notices and cautions or prosecute the provider for failing to meet essential standards.  Any regulatory decision that CQC takes is open to challenge by a registered person through a variety of internal and external appeal processes.