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Archived: Care at Home (Wearside) Limited - 13 Grange Terrace

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Inspection report

Date of Inspection: 23 December 2014
Date of Publication: 18 February 2015
Inspection Report published 18 February 2015 PDF

Staff should be properly trained and supervised, and have the chance to develop and improve their skills (outcome 14)

Meeting this standard

We checked that people who use this service

  • Are safe and their health and welfare needs are met by competent staff.

How this check was done

We looked at the personal care or treatment records of people who use the service, carried out a visit on 23 December 2014 and talked with staff.

Our judgement

People were cared for by staff who were supported to deliver care and treatment safely and to an appropriate standard.

Reasons for our judgement

We last visited the service on 23 May, 4 and 5 June 2014. We told the provider that they were not meeting this essential standard. We said, “People were not cared for by staff who were supported to deliver care and treatment safely and to an appropriate standard.” This was because the provider did not have suitable arrangements in place to ensure received an annual appraisal. We judged this had a minor impact on people who used the service, and told the provider to take action.

Following our inspection, the provider wrote to us and told us what actions they were going to take to improve.

At this inspection, we spent time reviewing the records of staff appraisals and supervisions. We found that staff received supervisions from a manager every three months as well as monthly 'spot checks' in the homes in which they supported people. We spoke with a manager about this. They said, "The spot-checks are designed to make sure that staff are providing the appropriate level of care and they can be responsive, such as if we have had a concern raised about a member of staff." Managers told us that staff responded well to spot checks because they were used as a support tool to provide immediate feedback to staff on their practice. We were told that spot checks could be arranged quickly if feedback from a person suggested that it would be beneficial to their care.

We looked at the records of annual staff appraisals. We found that appraisals were used as developmental tools for staff and that their future goals were recorded to help them focus their work on an area of professional development. A manager told us, "Our staffing team has improved recently in terms of stability and we can provide a consistent service to people, so that our staff get to know them well ."

We found from our checks of records and from speaking with managers that two of the four supervisions given to each member of staff per year were focused on how the member of staff felt about working for the service and their relationships with people. We found that this enabled staff to feedback to managers and to receive support to provide effective care. We found that during supervisions staff underwent skills checks where a manager would check their knowledge and understanding of safeguarding and confidentiality policies. The system of supervisions and appraisals enabled staff to be supported in their development, which meant that people received care from staff who were placed appropriately for their skills.

We found that the registered manager conducted a monthly audit on staff records, which included at least 35% of staff per month. The audit checked staff records, including training and supervision records, appraisals and spot-checks to make sure these were up to date. The audit also included a check to make sure that staff had satisfactory records in place from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), current criminal record checks in place and that each member of staff had supplied appropriate references.

We reviewed ten staff training records. We found that the manager maintained an electronic training matrix that enabled them to monitor staff training and schedule refreshers in a timely fashion. Staff had received training in areas that helped them to provide safe and effective care, such as safeguarding and whistleblowing, food hygiene, fire safety, dementia care and infection control. This meant that people received care and support from staff who had been trained appropriately.

We discussed the provision of training with the registered manager and provider. We found that staff received a one week dedicated training programme, followed by a period of shadowing an experienced colleague and an on-site supervision in the home they were placed in as the new worker carried out their duties . A manager told us that feedback was then obtained from the new member of staff, their experienced colleague and the people they had provided care for. This was used to prov