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Inspection carried out on 8 November 2018

During a routine inspection

This announced inspection was carried out on 8 and 9 November 2018 by an adult social care inspector. We gave the registered manager 24-hours’ notice of our inspection. This is because we needed to make sure that someone would be available to assist us with our inspection.

Northwich Network is a domiciliary care service run by VIVO Care Choices Limited, a company managed by Cheshire West and Chester Council. The service is registered to provide personal care to adults within their own homes. The service offers support to older people and people with learning disabilities, sensory impairments and physical disabilities. At the time of our inspection the service was providing support to 28 people and employed 49 staff.

At our last inspection we rated the service good. At this inspection we found the service remained good. We found no evidence or information from our inspection and ongoing monitoring that demonstrated serious risks or concerns. This inspection report is written in a shorter format because our overall rating of the service has not changed since our last inspection.

The service had systems in place to protect people from abuse.

People’s risk assessments in their care plans were managed well and covered all relevant aspects of their lives.

Staff were safely recruited at the service ensuring that only staff suitable to work with vulnerable people were employed.

People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice.

Most staff were up-to-date with their training. Some staff were overdue refresher training in some areas but we saw that they were scheduled to attend the next available training sessions.

People were supported to plan, buy and prepare the food and drink that they wanted.

We observed that staff had well-established and positive relationships with the people they supported.

The care plans we reviewed were person-centred and gave staff the information that they needed to safely and effectively meet people’s needs.

People were supported to take part in a variety of activities that were important to them.

There was a positive and caring culture amongst all of the staff we spoke with during our inspection.

The service used a range of methods to gather feedback from the people and their relatives about the quality of care and support being provided.

The service has been developed and designed in line with the values that underpin the Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance. These values include choice, promotion of independence and inclusion. This means that the people supported by the service who live with learning disabilities and autism could live as ordinary a life as any citizen.

Further information is in the detailed findings below.

Inspection carried out on 7 March 2016

During a routine inspection

We inspected this service on 7 and 8 March 2016 and gave short notice to the registered provider prior to our visit.

This domiciliary care service is owned by VIVO Care Choices Limited a company controlled by Cheshire West and Chester Council. They are registered to provide personal care to adults within their own homes. The agency offers support to older people and people with learning disabilities, sensory impairments and physical disabilities. The office is situated in the suburbs of the Northwich area. The agency employs 60 staff.

The service is provided to people living in their own accommodation, rented through a partner landlord. This arrangement is often known as ‘supported living’. At the time of our inspection there were 30 people who received a service in this way.

There was a registered manager employed to work at the service. 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.

People told us staff were kind, caring and supported them well. Relatives said they were happy with the support provided and that the staff were very kind and patient with people.

Support plans were person centred and gave good information about the individual needs of each person. They contained comprehensive information and included a range of risk assessments tailored to each person’s particular requirements. Some people were supported with their medications and these were well managed by the staff team. Some risk assessments had not been reviewed and these were brought to the attention of the registered manager.

There were robust staff recruitment processes in place which meant that people were protected from staff who were unsuitable to work with people who may be deemed vulnerable. Staff had undertaken an induction and had access to supervision sessions, staff meetings and training relevant to their job role. Staff commented that there was a wide range of training available.

People had access to information about the service that included a statement of purpose and this was written in large print.

A complaints policy was available and processes were in place should a complaint be received. The registered provider had not received any complaints and CQC had also not received any complaints about this service.

People and relatives said they were safe in the support of the staff. Staff were aware of safeguarding policies and procedures and had undertaken safeguarding awareness training. The registered manager understood the principles of the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 and the implications of that on people who used the service. Staff had an awareness of the MCA through the induction process and safeguarding training.

Quality assurance processes were in place which included meetings held with people who used the service and relatives. There were also a range of audits undertaken in relation to the service provided that monitored its safety and effectiveness.