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The Meath Epilepsy Charity Outstanding

Inspection Summary

Overall summary & rating


Updated 10 September 2016

The inspection took place on 22 June 2016 and was unannounced. The Meath Epilepsy Trust is registered to provide accommodation with personal care for up to 84 adults who are living with epilepsy and may have associated learning and or physical disabilities. There are eight individual houses within the service, each of which has a manager and senior staff team. There are communal resources available to all those living at The Meath including a café, skills centre and gym.

The home had a registered manager. A registered manager is a person who has registered with the Care Quality Commission to manage the service. Like registered providers, they are ‘registered persons’. Registered persons have legal responsibility for meeting the requirements in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and associated Regulations about how the service is run. The registered manager supported us during the inspection.

People received excellent care in a way that was personalised and responsive to their needs. There a culture of positive risk taking which enabled people to lead full lives and maximised independence. People were supported by skilled staff who were knowledgeable about their needs and aspirations. Wherever possible, people were encouraged to take control of their own care and were supported in this by relatives and other professionals.

There was a positive and vibrant culture in the service and people were encouraged to push the boundaries and challenge expectations. In addition to a wide range of individual activities people were supported to take part in an extreme sports group which aimed to raise people’s confidence. The service facilitated two social enterprise schemes based on the main high street of the local town. There was a commitment to developing community links and members of the public were invited to participate in various leisure activities with the service.

People’s involvement in the running and development of the service was actively encouraged. People were involved in the recruitment of staff and had begun to contribute to audits of the service by acting as ‘experts by experience’. The service gained regular feedback from people, staff and relatives through an annual questionnaire, house meetings and residents and relative’s forums. The culture of the home was open and people felt confident to express their views and opinions. Concerns and complaints were encouraged, investigated and responded to in a timely manner.

The service worked extensively with other organisation to raise public awareness of people living with epilepsy and was actively involved in on-going research. Local links with other services had been established to ensure good practice was shared. People and relatives spoke highly of the registered manager and other senior managers who acted as positive role models and had a visible presence across the service. Quality assurance processes were robust and action plans to improve the service were prioritised and completed quickly.

People’s healthcare needs were supported in a holistic manner. The on-site healthcare team provided specialist advice and ensured staff were aware of their responsibilities. There were close links with healthcare specialists and appointments were well documented to ensure people’s complex needs were met safely. Medicines were managed safely and staff were knowledgeable about the medicines and support people required in a health emergency.

People were supported to maintain a healthy diet and we saw people were fully involved in choosing their food. Staff were knowledgeable about people’s dietary requirements and where people required support to eat this was provided in a dignified manner which encouraged independence.

There were sufficient staff deployed throughout the service to meet people’s needs. People’s safety was protected as the service had robust recruitment procedures in place and staff were knowledgeable about their responsibilities in identifying and reporting abuse. There were contingency plans in place to ensure people could continue to receive care in the event of an emergency.

Staff received the training and support they required to carry out their roles effectively. Staff undertook a comprehensive induction when they joined the service to enable them to learn about people’s needs and the visions of the service. Progression training was available to staff who wished to further their careers.

Inspection areas



Updated 10 September 2016

The service was safe.

People were safeguarded from the risk of abuse because staff understood their roles and responsibilities in protecting them.

Risks to the health, safety and well-being of people were addressed in a personalised and enabling way which promoted independence.

The service had safe and robust recruitment procedures in place and people were supported by sufficient and suitable staff.

Safe medicines processes were in place and staff were aware of their responsibilities.



Updated 10 September 2016

The service was effective.

People’s legal rights were protected because staff routinely gained their consent and where possible allowed people to make decisions for themselves.

Staff received effective training and support to enable them to carry out their role.

People had choices regarding food and drink and were supported them to maintain a healthy diet.

People were supported to maintain good health by a team of on-site healthcare professionals who maintained links with specialist teams.



Updated 10 September 2016

The service was caring.

People and their relatives told us that staff treated them with kindness and compassion.

Staff had an excellent understanding of people's needs and worked with them to ensure they were actively involved in decisions about their care and support.

People were supported to maintain and develop their independence in a variety of ways which took into account people’s aspirations.

Care was consistently provided in a way which respected people's privacy and upheld their dignity.

People were supported to develop and maintain relationships. Visitors were welcomed to the service.



Updated 10 September 2016

The service was extremely responsive.

People received a personalised service which was responsive to their individual needs.

The service placed a strong emphasis on meeting people's aspirations through the provision of meaningful, imaginative activities and opportunities.

The service was committed to ensuring a strong community presence which highlighted people’s abilities.

People, relatives and staff felt listened to and any issues raised were handled in an open, transparent and honest way.



Updated 10 September 2016

The service was exceptionally well-led.

The registered persons led service developments to continually improve and maintain a high quality of life for people. New and innovative ways of further enhancing people's lives were continually being explored.

The service used a range of creative methods to ensure that people were involved in the running and development of the service.

People, relatives and staff felt their views were listened to and there was a strong positive culture throughout the service.

The service worked extensively with other organisations to promote good practice and develop opportunities for people.

Robust quality assurance systems were in place which took into account people’s views and experiences.