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Inspection report

Date of Inspection: 8 August 2011
Date of Publication: 12 October 2011
Inspection Report published 12 October 2011 PDF

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

Not met 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

Our judgement

People living in the home were not always safe and their health and welfare needs were not consistently met by competent staff. There were shortfalls in the mandatory training provided for staff. Staff had not received regular support through supervision, appraisal or regular team meetings.

Overall we found that improvements were needed for this essential standard.

User experience

We did not ask people living in the home about this outcome.

Other evidence

One staff member told us that training had improved recently with lots of courses provided or planned. However, they told us there had been hardly any training provided over the previous two years. Staff told us that the Trust had sent in a lot of senior staff from elsewhere within the organisation to address issues, but this had led to some confusion over management and reporting responsibilities. We were told by staff that there were not clear lines of accountability in place. One staff member also said that it felt as though “any good work that might have been done over the years”, was not being valued.

Senior staff told us that there had been a culture change towards supporting and enabling people to do things for themselves and make decisions and choices. However, we saw limited evidence of this. In addition, we were told that some staff were now more positive and motivated and were engaging better with people in the home. We saw limited evidence of this during our visit. The staff did not appear to have fully adopted the new approach and from what they told us, needed more training and greater understanding of their role and the expectations of them in order to develop a sense of team working. At times we saw that the people living in the home were more engaged with the senior managers than the care staff. Care staff told us that the permanent staff team were committed.

The assistant manager said that weekly practice sessions on the new behaviour management system were to start once all staff had completed the training. He said that the new system provided staff with a range of techniques to prevent negative behaviours escalating to the point where physical restraint might be necessary. Regular team meetings were planned, but had not yet been established. The staff had been interviewed individually to identify support and training needs. We were told that some staff were still concerned about using the new techniques having been instructed previously not to use physical restraint. The overall training spreadsheet for the team could not be accessed due to the absence of the administrator. However, a review of some individual training records found significant gaps in mandatory training. Full training records were provided following the inspection. They indicated significant shortfalls in staff training including health and safety, fire awareness, the Mental Capacity Act, food hygiene, autism awareness and epilepsy. There were also gaps in the training on basic first aid, medication and safeguarding, although 17 staff had recently received safeguarding training.

Staff told us that supervision had been infrequent. One staff member told us that he had one personal supervision in June but no others this year. He also told us that there had been two team meetings in the previous three weeks. He said the new changes were positive but some staff and some of the people living in the home were finding them difficult or confusing at times. Senior managers acknowledged that regular team meetings and supervisions needed to be established.