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Archived: Benham Lodge Requires improvement

The provider of this service changed - see new profile


Inspection carried out on 8 March 2016

During a routine inspection

We inspected Benham Lodge on 8th and 9th March 2016. Benham Lodge provides accommodation and support for up to 9 people. Accommodation is provided in one large detached building located along a main road. There were nine people living at Benham Lodge at the time of the inspection. Two people had their bedrooms on the ground floor and seven people’s rooms were on the first floor. There was a large communal garden to the back of the property, two social communal areas and a kitchen/dining area.

The service provided care and support for people living with autism, Down’s syndrome, Williams syndrome and other learning disabilities. There were also people living at Benham Lodge who presented challenging behaviours. The service had a very low turnover of staff. This means that staff got to know the people at the service really well.

The service has a registered manager who is currently going through the processes of being de-registered to take on a new role. There was an acting manager in post who was in the process of registering as manager of the service. The acting manager was working alongside the registered manager and had been in role since 1st February 2016. 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.

We found that people’s medicine files were not being updated when people had been prescribed new medicine or when there had been changes in dosage of medicine. This can lead to errors in the administration of medicine to people as the files may not reflect what is actually prescribed.

We found occurrences where people were not being referred to the appropriate health professionals. One person came to Benham Lodge on a specific diet and had not been referred to a speech and language therapist for review. This is a concern because the person had not been reviewed for nearly seven years and there may be a change in the persons need during that time. We highlighted this to management on the day of inspection and an appointment was made for them.

Staff had not reported incidents and accidents consistently. We found that the reporting of seizures for one individual where six different incidents were logged in four different files at Benham Lodge. This means that there is no consistent record for the person and the seizures cannot be accurately monitored or managed.

In care files mental capacity assessments were not being consistently recorded for people and staff lacked an understanding of how to implement mental capacity assessments in practice. The registered manager identified this and all but one member of staff had recently received training on mental capacity assessments. The acting manager had booked the final member of staff on the next available training date. We were told by the acting manager that there would be a review of mental capacity assessments as part of the ongoing action plan.

There was no complaint log at the service. The provider’s policy stated that there should be a compliments and complaint log at every location. The acting manager showed us the new system for logging complaints but they could not provide us with a full history of complaints and how these had been managed.

Care plans contained information that was out of date and information was not recorded in a manner that was easy to follow and read. Risk assessments were not always being completed when they were required. We were shown the new layout for the care plans that included clear and easy to follow sections. This had yet to be implemented. The current layout makes it difficult for staff to find information about how they should support people. Important information could become lost as it is difficult to identify. This increases the risk of potentia

Inspection carried out on 11 December 2013

During a routine inspection

We spoke with three people who lived at the home. They were all satisfied with the care and support they received and were happy living at Benham Lodge. One person told us, "I love it here. My keyworker is great". Another said, "They (staff) help me if I need it and they take care of me". We noted that the home provided a wide variety of social, educational and occupational opportunities in both group and individual settings. The people we spoke with were happy with the number and types of activities on offer.

We saw that people's consent was obtained where possible before care and treatment was undertaken. We observed that the care given was safe and appropriate and based on effective care planning and risk assessments. This meant that people's individual needs were met and preferences were taken into account.

People were protected from abuse and cared for in a safe and inclusive environment. We noted that there were adequate numbers of skilled and experienced staff to deliver safe and appropriate care. In addition, the provider had an effective system to regularly assess and monitor the quality of service that people received.

Inspection carried out on 26 March 2013

During a routine inspection

People told us that they liked living at Benham Lodge. One person said "it is great living here... the staff are so nice and we all get on like one big family".

Staff showed a good understanding of people�s needs and preferences and we noted that staff treated people with respect.

We found that the property was reasonably well maintained and there were regular checks on the fire and water systems. Electrical items underwent regular testing to ensure they were safe to use and did not pose a risk to service users or staff.

People told us that they were able to have a say in how their rooms were decorated and we saw that each bedroom had been furnished with personal affects such as photographs, posters, televisions and stereos.

There was a system in place for managing medications and the provider took a pro-active approach to managing medication incidents. Staff underwent appropriate training so that they could safely handle and administer medication to people using the service.

We found that staff received the training they needed to provide care and support safely and showed us that they understood the needs of the people using the service. We saw that there was a lively atmosphere in the home and that people chose how they spent their time.

There was a complaints procedure available which was in an easy-to-read format and was accessible to people using the service, their relatives and visitors.

Inspection carried out on 28 October 2011

During a routine inspection

The people that use the service at Benham Lodge have learning difficulties and therefore not everyone was able to tell us about their experiences. To help us to understand the experiences people have, we used our Short Observational Framework for Inspection (SOFI) tool. The SOFI tool allows us to spend time watching what is going on in a service and helps us to record how people spend their time, the type of support they get and whether they have positive experiences.

As the independent people that use services were out at the time of the visit, we spent forty minutes watching before and during lunchtime and found that overall people had positive experiences. The staff supporting them knew what support they needed and they respected their wishes if they wanted to manage on their own. The support that we saw being given to people matched what their care plan said they needed. Relatives of one of the people spoke positively about the service and the improvement they had seen in their relative since they had lived at the home.

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