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Inspection carried out on 19 February 2019

During a routine inspection

About the service:

Rely Care Agency is a domiciliary care provider that provides care and support to people in Worcester and the surrounding area. Not everyone supported by Rely Care Agency receives regulated activity; CQC only inspects the service being received by people provided with ‘personal care’; help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. At the time of our inspection one person was being supported with personal care.

People’s experience of using this service:

People received personalised support from support workers who knew them well. Rotas were arranged so the same workers supported the person with a backup worker to cover times when the main worker could not attend.

People were encouraged to remain as independent as possible. Care records emphasised that support workers should encourage and support people to be independent.

Support workers told us they felt proud to work for the service and felt the small nature of the service helped develop a family feel both with colleagues and people they supported.

People were encouraged to speak up when they had concerns or felt things could be done better. Support workers we spoke with told us they felt listened to by the management team.

The service was selective in accepting referrals from the local authority and only accepted referrals where they felt they could offer the person a distinctive, personalised service.

Regular reviews ensured the support people received continued to meet their needs.

Rating at last inspection:

At the last inspection the service was rated good (published 4 August 2016).

Why we inspected:

This was a planned inspection based on the rating of the service at the last inspection.

Follow up:

We will continue to monitor the service through information we receive and future inspections.

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

Inspection carried out on 13 July 2016

During a routine inspection

This inspection took place on 13 July 2016 and was announced.

Rely Care Agency provides personal care for people in their own home. There were six people using the service when we inspected and there was a registered manager in post who was also the provider. 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 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

The provider had appointed a Liaison Consultant to manage the agency. Staff and relatives we spoke with referred to this person as the manager, which is reflected in the report.

All relatives felt the staff provided care that was safe and had no concerns about their family member’s welfare. Care staff knew what they would do if they felt a person was at risk of potential abuse and felt confident that any report incidents would be addressed. People had their individual risks assessed and care staff knew how to monitor, respond and manage them. There were enough care staff when people needed them in their home at the arranged times.

People’s relatives we spoke with felt that the care staff were knowledgeable about their roles and responsibilities. Care staff told us they received regular training and supervisions that help them provide care to people they supported.

People were involved in making decisions about their care and their consent was appropriately obtained by care staff. Care plans detailed what support people needed and provided guidance for care staff on how best to meet the care people wished to receive. People were supported with preparing their meals or care staff prepared them while including people in their choice of food.

People’s relatives told us their family member liked the care staff and their care needs were supported well. They also felt encouraged to be involved in their lives and choices and were happy that their dignity and privacy was respected.

People’s needs were assessed, staff understood people’s individual needs and were able to respond appropriately if they changed. Care plans were detailed and showed that relatives had been consulted if a person was not able to communicate their wishes and choices.

The management team were available to talk with and would listen and act of any feedback provided about the service. The management team had kept their knowledge up to date with support from the provider and external professionals. The staffing team felt the provider and management team led by example and that they regularly checked on the quality of the care that people received and addressed any identified shortfalls.

Inspection carried out on 22 January 2014

During a routine inspection

During this inspection we spoke on the telephone with people who used the agency and two staff. We spoke with the registered manager and the liaison consultant at the agency office.

People were complimentary about the care and support that they received. People told us: “I look forward to the days when my carers come. X (staff name) sits and chats with me before they help me with my shower. I don’t feel embarrassed with X she is very good”.

We found that proper steps had been taken to ensure that individualised care and treatment was planned and delivered in a way that was intended to ensure people's safety and welfare.

Staff received the training and support needed to ensure people received appropriate care.

The provider had systems of audit in place to enable them to monitor the quality of the service provided and ensure that people received appropriate care and treatment.

We found that any comments and complaints people made were responded to appropriately.

Inspection carried out on 18 December 2012

During a routine inspection

We inspected the agency office and spoke on the telephone with people who used the agency. We also spoke with two members of staff who provided care to people as well as the registered manager and a liaison consultant employed by the provider. We found that people were able to express their views and had been involved in making decisions about their care and treatment.

People were complimentary about the care and support that the agency provided. One person told us, “It’s a very good service, I’ve no complaints. They work hard and they’re very kind.” This meant that people felt the agency was meeting their individual needs.

We found that people who used the agency were protected from the risk of abuse.

People were cared for, or supported by, suitably qualified, skilled and experienced staff.

The provider had systems in place to regularly assess and monitor the quality of service that people received.

Inspection carried out on 25 October and 12 December 2011

During a routine inspection

The agency provides care workers to relieve the main carer for the people who used the agency. This enables the main carer to have a break away from caring. This is provided through the Flexible Breaks Voucher Scheme and care workers spend three to four hours once a week with the people who use the service, at a time requested by the main carer.

We visited the agency office and spoke on the telephone with people that used the agency, this included relatives of people who used the service. We talked to people about their experience of the care and service they received from the agency. One person said “I really like my care worker”. They told us they felt happy and safe when they were with their care worker.

Relatives of the people who used the agency said that they were “very efficient” and they were “very very pleased” with the service they had received to date. They told us they were able to contact the agency if there were any problems. A relative told us that the care worker they had was “brilliant, X (person’s name) loves her to bits”. Another relative said the care worker “does all I want her to do in the four hours. She is ever so good. She phones me if she is going to be late or wants to come a bit early”. We were told that the care workers were “excellent” and “very good”.

People told us that their care worker took them out and about in the community and they had done activities such as bowling, walking the Malvern Hills, visit to a local café, shopping and supporting them to care for their pets at home. People told us that the care workers also spent time sitting and chatting to them at home.

We found that people received effective, safe and appropriate care, treatment and support that met their needs.