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Alina Homecare Stevenage Ltd Good


Inspection carried out on 15 July 2019

During a routine inspection

About the service

Alina Homecare is a domiciliary care service that provides personal care and support for people living in their own homes. At the time of the inspection 180 people used the service.

Not everyone who used the service received personal care. CQC only inspects where people receive personal care. This is help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. Where they do we also consider any wider social care provided.

People’s experience of using this service and what we found

People told us they were satisfied with the care and support they received from Alina Homecare Stevenage. Staff knew how to support people safely and understood how to report any concerns. There were enough staff available to meet people’s needs. The provider had a robust recruitment process which supported the registered manager to recruit staff safely. People’s medicines were managed safely, and people were protected from the risk and spread of infection. The management team shared learning from accidents and incidents with the staff team to help reduce the risk of recurrence.

Staff supported people to eat and drink sufficient amounts to help maintain their health and wellbeing. People were supported to access health and social care services when needed. People’s consent was obtained before staff provided care. People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice.

People told us care staff were kind, caring, and respectful. People were involved in developing and reviewing their care plans along with their relatives if appropriate. People said they knew how to raise concerns and we noted the registered manager addressed any feedback in a timely way.

The registered manager undertook regular quality monitoring to help ensure people received a good quality service to meet their needs. People and their relatives said the registered manager was always approachable and available. The staff team worked in partnership with other organisations to ensure good outcomes for people.

For more details, please see the full report which is on the CQC website at

Rating at last inspection

The last rating for this service was Good (published 24 January 2017).

Why we inspected

This was a planned inspection based on the previous rating.

Follow up

We will continue to monitor information we receive about the service until we return to visit as per our re-inspection programme. If we receive any concerning information we may inspect sooner.

Inspection carried out on 20 December 2016

During a routine inspection

This inspection was carried out on 20 December 2016 and on the 23 December 2016 we contacted people and staff to obtain feedback about their experience of using and working for the service. The inspection was announced. At the last inspection in January 2014 the service was found to be meeting the required standards.

Alina homecare Stevenage provides personal care and support to people living in their own homes. They also provide support to people who live in two extra care schemes in Stevenage. There were 212 people being supported by the service at the time of our inspection.

The service had a registered manager in post. A registered manager is a person who has registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) 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 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

The service demonstrated they had systems and processes in place to keep people safe from harm. Staff knew how to recognise and respond to any allegations of abuse. Medicines were managed safely. People were supported by sufficient numbers of staff and these were recruited through a robust process which helped ensure staff were suited for the roles they performed.

Staff were inducted and received on-going training and support. Staff had individual supervisions, team meetings and regular contact with office staff to share good practice and discuss any concerns. People received care that was effective and met their needs. Consent was obtained, recorded and reviewed by staff who were aware of the principles of The Mental Capacity Act 2005 (MCA). People, where required were supported to eat and drink sufficient amounts to help to keep them healthy. People’s day to day health needs were maintained and people were supported to attend appointments as required.

People received care that was both personalised and staff demonstrated they were kind, caring and compassionate. We saw that care plans were written in a way that showed people were involved in the development and review of their care pans. People’s choices were respected along with their dignity being maintained and promoted. People knew how to raise concerns and felt their feedback was listened to and acted upon.

There were systems and processes in place to monitor and improve the service to achieve a consistently high standard of care and support for everyone who used the service. There was a call monitoring system and spot checks were undertaken to help ensure visits were provided at the agreed times. Feedback from people indicated that visits were sometimes provided later than the expected time but this was being monitored and managed and people felt this had improved in recent months. This was being monitored at all times and time critical visits were prioritised to help ensure the service was consistently responsive to people’s needs.

The management team and staff were open, honest and inclusive. We saw evidence that many processes had been introduced to help ensure the service made continual improvements. There was a consistent staff team following a brief period of transition. This had contributed to an improvement in both the consistency and quality of care as people developed meaningful relationships and the staff team got to know people's individuals routines.

Inspection carried out on 17 January 2014

During a routine inspection

During our inspection of the service on 17 January 2014, people told us they had been involved in planning their care and that staff had treated them with respect and dignity. One person said, �All [the] care workers that have visited me have been very friendly and kind and respectful. I get on well with them.�

We looked at records which showed that people�s care and support needs had been assessed, documented and reviewed. They were personalised and gave staff clear guidance on how to meet people�s individual requirements. One person told us, �They [staff] talk to me and explain things to me, they make me laugh. They are very kind to me and they understand me. They don't rush and are gentle with me.�

Records showed that effective recruitment procedures were in place to ensure that staff were fit, able and properly trained to meet people�s needs. This included carrying out appropriate checks before staff began work.

Suitable arrangements had been made to ensure that staff were appropriately supported to perform their roles. One member of care staff said, �I really enjoy working for the company because they are very supportive and the training is really good.�

We looked at records which showed that systems had been put in place to manage risks effectively and to regularly assess and monitor the quality of services provided.

Inspection carried out on 21 March 2013

During a routine inspection

During our inspection carried out on 21 March 2013, people who used the service and their relatives who we spoke with, were positive and complimentary about the care and support they received from the agency. One person said, "The staff really help me and are very good." Another said, �The person who looks after my husband is the perfect carer.�

People were involved in the planning of their care and support. Care and support plans were 'person centred' and documented in detail. These were regularly reviewed to ensure that any changes to people's needs were met. There was a robust system in place to cover last minute staff absences in order that people received the care stated in their care plan.

Care staff members were trained in safeguarding people from harm and knew to report any allegations of abuse. They were not aware that they could contact the local authority safeguarding team to report safeguarding concerns.

Complaints were handled in a positive way and line with best practice.

The systems regarding the maintaining, storage retention and appropriate disposal of records were in place. However, some policies and procedures required revision, as they were out of date.

Inspection carried out on 31 March 2012

During a routine inspection

People who use this service told us they felt they were treated with respect and dignity by the staff team. One person praised the staff for their kindness, happy attitude and general helpfulness. This was echoed by relatives of people that we spoke with. People and their relatives felt confident they could recommend this service to others.

Another person using this service told us: �I am more than happy. I am very, very lucky; I have had the same regular carers for two years with consistent carers covering for holidays and sickness.� Another person told us that they felt the staff were skilled and competent in providing care.

People using the service told us they were involved in their plan of care. One person said �I can change or amend my care package whenever I want, I just have to say to one of the staff and they will arrange it.� We also received positive comments about the management team. One person praised the owner for their hands-on approach whilst another said �A senior carer comes around every three months or so to make sure I am happy with the service provided.�