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Care is Central - Independent Living Services

Overall: Good read more about inspection ratings

Lavender Court, Dunstable Street, Ampthill, Bedford, MK45 2BX 07786 323990

Provided and run by:
Care Is Central Limited

Latest inspection summary

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Background to this inspection

Updated 27 April 2023

Inspection team

This inspection was carried out by one inspector and an Expert by Experience. An Expert by Experience is a person who has personal experience of using or caring for someone who uses this type of care service.

Service and service type

Care is Central provides care and support to people living in specialist ‘extra care’ housing. Extra care housing is purpose-built or adapted single household accommodation in a shared site or building. People’s care and housing are provided under separate contractual agreements. CQC does not regulate premises used for extra care housing; this inspection looked at people’s personal care and support service.

Registered Manager

This provider is required to have a registered manager to oversee the delivery of regulated activities at this location. A registered manager is a person who has registered with the Care Quality Commission to manage the service. Registered managers and providers are legally responsible for how the service is run, for the quality and safety of the care provided and compliance with regulations.

At the time of our inspection there was a registered manager in post.

Notice of inspection

We gave the service 24 hours’ notice of the inspection. This was because the management team are often out of the office supporting staff or providing care. We needed to be sure that the provider or registered manager would be available to support the inspection.

Inspection activity started on 05 April 2023 and ended on 24 April 2023. We visited the service location on 05 and 11 April 2023.

What we did before inspection

The provider was not asked to complete a Provider Information Return (PIR) prior to this inspection. A PIR is information providers send us to give some key information about the service, what the service does well and improvements they plan to make. We reviewed information we had received about the service. We sought feedback from the local authority and professionals who work with the service. We used all this information to plan our inspection.

During the inspection

We spoke with 8 people and 5 relatives. We spoke with 9 staff including the registered manager, the chief operating officer, care staff and the nominated individual. The nominated individual is responsible for supervising the management of the service on behalf of the provider.

We reviewed a range of records. This included 9 people's care records. We looked at 5 staff files in relation to recruitment, training, and supervision. A variety of records relating to the management of the service including audits, policies and procedures were reviewed.

Overall inspection


Updated 27 April 2023

We expect health and social care providers to guarantee people with a learning disability and autistic people respect, equality, dignity, choices and independence and good access to local communities that most people take for granted. ‘Right support, right care, right culture’ is the guidance CQC follows to make assessments and judgements about services supporting people with a learning disability and autistic people and providers must have regard to it.

At the time of the inspection, the location did not care or support anyone with a learning disability or an autistic person. However, we assessed the care provision under Right Support, Right Care, Right Culture, as it is registered as a specialist service for this population group.

About the service

Lavender Court is one of seven independent living schemes which is run by Care is Central Limited, providing care to people in specialist ‘extra care’ housing. Extra care housing is purpose-built or adapted single household accommodation in a shared site or building. People’s care and housing are provided under separate contractual agreements. The service provides support to people over and under the age of 65 years old, people living with dementia, people living with a physical disability, people living with a learning disability and people living with mental health needs.

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. At the time of our inspection there were 68 people being supported with the regulated activity of personal care.

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

Right Support:

People and their relatives provided positive comments about the care and support which they received. These comments included, “All [family member’s] care needs are being met. I couldn’t manage without them.” And, “The [staff] are kind and caring and go out of their way to assist me.”

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. Staff were passionate about putting people at the centre of their care and recognised the importance of enabling people to maintain their independence.

Right Care:

People received care which was kind, sensitive and caring. Staff had received a through induction which included completion of mandatory training and applied this in their role to maintain the safety of people. There were adequate staff staffing levels to meet people’s needs.

Right Culture:

The provider continuously sought opportunities to improve the quality and standard of care provided. A quality assurance system was in place which identified shortfalls and failings of the service and actions were taken to address these.

People and their relatives felt the registered manager was approachable and were confident any concerns or complaints which they shared would be dealt with promptly.

Staff felt supported and motivated in their role. Comments from staff included, “It is a good organisation which looks after people and staff well. Staff work well together as a team. I wish I had worked here earlier.” And, “We all work together as a team. There is always somebody to go to with concerns. Even the top manager comes to the service and is available to speak to.”

For more details, please see the full report which is on the CQC website at www.cqc.org.uk

Rating at last inspection

This service was registered with us on 01 February 2022, and this is the first inspection.

Why we inspected

This inspection was prompted by a review of the information we held about this service.

Follow up

We will continue to monitor information we receive about the service, which will help inform when we next inspect.