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Inspection carried out on 17 December 2018

During a routine inspection

What life is like for people using this service:

¿ People continued to feel safe living at the service. Risks to people’s health, safety and welfare had been identified and were known by staff. Risk assessments relating to the environment were in place to keep people safe. Staffing levels were appropriate to meet the needs of the people using the service. People told us they thought the home was well-staffed. Medicines were safely managed. The home was clean, tidy and fresh. There were systems in place to monitor incidents and accidents and learn from these.

¿ People’s care, health and cultural needs were identified so staff could meet these. The staff were skilled and competent and knew the people they supported well. People said they liked the food served and had a choice of different dishes. People were supported to maintain good health and referred to health professionals when required. The design and decoration of the home suited people’s needs. Staff worked within the principles of the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 and ensured people consented to their care.

¿ People continued to receive care from staff who were kind and caring. People were encouraged to make decisions about how their care was provided and their privacy and dignity were protected and promoted. People had developed positive relationships with staff who had a good understanding of their needs and preferences.

¿ People received person centred care that met their needs. Care plans were written from the perspective of the person using the service and set out how staff should meet their needs. The staff team were knowledgeable about people’s needs. Managers and staff ensured information was provided to people in an accessible format. People took part in a range of group and one-to-one activities depending on their preferences. People said they knew how to make a complaint if needed.

¿ People, relatives and staff told us the service was well managed and had an open and friendly culture. Staff said the service had a family atmosphere and they felt well-supported. The providers audit system covered all aspects of the service and helped to ensure the care people received was safe and the environment fit for purpose and well-maintained. Managers and staff worked in partnership with other agencies to ensure people got the care and support they needed.

For more information please see the Detailed Findings below.

Our last inspection report for this service was published on 26 July 2018 and the rating was ‘Good’.

About the service: Avens Limited provides accommodation and personal care for up to 14 adults with a physical or learning disability. The care home is situated in a residential area in the Northamptonshire village of Ringstead. At the time of our visit there were 13 people using the service.

Why we inspected: This was a planned inspection based on the rating at the last inspection. The service remained rated Good overall.

Follow up: We will continue to monitor the service through the information we receive until we return to visit as per our re-inspection programme. If any concerning information is received we may inspect sooner.

This was a scheduled inspection based on the service’s previous rating.

Inspection carried out on 14 June 2016

During a routine inspection

This unannounced inspection took place on 14 June 2016. This residential care service is registered to provide accommodation and personal care support for up to 14 people with learning disabilities. At the time of the inspection there were 14 people living at the home.

There was a registered manager in post at the time of our inspection. 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 felt safe in the home. Staff understood the need to protect people from harm and abuse and knew what action they should take if they had any concerns. Staffing levels ensured that people received the support they required at the times they needed and recruitment procedures protected people from receiving unsafe care from care staff unsuited to the job.

Care records contained risk assessments and risk management plans to protect people from identified risks and helped to keep them safe. They gave information for staff on the identified risk and informed staff on the measures to take to minimise any risks. People were supported to take their medicines as prescribed and medicines were obtained, stored, administered and disposed of safely.

People received care from staff that were supported to carry out their roles to meet the assessed needs of people living at the home. Staff received training in areas that enabled them to understand and meet the care needs of each person and people were actively involved in decisions about their care and support needs. There were formal systems in place to assess people’s capacity for decision making under the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS). People were supported to maintain good health and had access to healthcare services when they were needed.

People received care from compassionate and supportive staff and people and staff had positive relationships with each other. Staff understood the needs of the people they supported and used the information they had about people to engage them in meaningful conversations. People were supported to make their own choices and when they needed additional support the staff arranged for an advocate to become involved.

Care plans were written in a person centred manner and focussed on giving people choices and opportunities to receive their care how they liked it to be. They detailed how people wished to be supported and people were fully involved in making decisions about their care. People participated in a range of activities and received the support they needed to help them do this. People were able to choose where they spent their time and what they did. People were able to raise complaints and they were investigated and resolved promptly.

People and staff were confident in the management of the home and felt listened to. People were able to provide feedback and this was acted on and improvements were made. The service had audits and quality monitoring systems in place which ensured people received good quality care that enhanced their life. Policies and procedures were in place which reflected the care provided at the home.

Inspection carried out on 16 October 2013

During a routine inspection

People who used the service told us that they were well looked after and felt supported by care staff. During this visit we spoke with three people who used the service and three staff. A person we spoke with said, ��I like living here, and I have things that I like in my room to make it comfortable and homely.��

We saw that people's support plans were detailed and took account of people's individual needs and how this would be supported and included planned activities that involved them to pass the time. A person we spoke with said, ��They respect my wishes and help me with what I want to do. Today I went to the local church.�� Another person said, ��Recently I travelled a fair distance to retrace my roots. One of the care staff took me there and I loved visiting my former home.�'

The provider took adequate steps to protect the people they cared for and their care staff from harm.

We found that the provider had carried out checks on staff before they were employed to make sure they were fit to carry out their roles and responsibilities.

The provider had suitable systems to check the quality of care and the overall service people received.

Inspection carried out on 2 January 2013

During an inspection looking at part of the service

This visit was to check that the provider had taken action to meet the standard which we judged as non compliant when we visited in September 2012.

During this visit we spoke with the deputy manager a senior carer and the head of care. They all said that improvements had been made since our visit and all care staff had received training and instructions which ensured important events that affected people's welfare health and safety were reported to the CQC and other external organisations such as the local authority safeguarding team for their review and any further action.

We found that the provider now had documented systems that ensured such reporting. The care staff we spoke with confirmed such arrangements.

Inspection carried out on 27 September 2012

During a routine inspection

This inspection was part of the routine CQC annual inspection programme.

On this inspection we found that care plans were appropriate and people were involved about decisions affecting their care. The care plans were based on people's assessed needs and provided clear guidance to staff about the delivery of care. People were supported in promoting their independence and community involvement. One person we spoke with said that staff were ��very good�� in encouraging him to pursue outside activities. People were treated with dignity and respect and staff took time to listen to people and respond to what they were saying in a calm and respectful manner. We found that there was competent staff to support people well. We found that the provider did not always make the required notifications to the CQC and other external organisations such as the local authority safeguarding team. This meant people were not confident that important events that affect their welfare health and safety were reported as part of a mandatory data collection system for review and any further action.

Reports under our old system of regulation (including those from before CQC was created)