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Mencap - Dorset Support Service Good

Inspection Summary

Overall summary & rating


Updated 15 February 2020

About the service

Mencap Dorset Support Service is a supported living service. The agency specialises in providing personal care and support for people with a learning disability or mental health condition living in the community. The service was currently supporting eight people receiving a regulated activity of personal care.

Not everyone who used the service received personal care. CQC only inspects where people receive personal care. This is help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. Where they do we also consider any wider social care provided. At the time of the inspection the agency was providing support with personal care to eight people.

The service has been developed and designed in line with the principles and values that underpin Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance. This ensures that people who use the service can live as full a life as possible and achieve the best possible outcomes. The principles reflect the need for people with learning disabilities and/or autism to live meaningful lives that include control, choice, and independence. People using the service receive planned and co-ordinated person-centred support that is appropriate and inclusive for them.

People’s experience of using this service and what we found

People told us they felt safe, happy and well cared for by Mencap Dorset Support Service. Relatives spoke positively about the care their family members received and the difference it had made to their lives. Staff knew what signs and symptoms could indicate people are experiencing harm or abuse. Staff felt confident management would listen and act if they raised concerns.

The service had robust recruitment processes to ensure people were supported by staff with the necessary skills, experience and character. There were enough staff to keep people safe and meet their individual needs. Staff had a good understanding of people’s individual risks and how they could work with them to minimise the risks.

People were supported by staff who had received mandatory and specialist training to help them meet their diverse and changing needs. Staff said the training was good. Staff competency was monitored on an ongoing basis through formal observations, supervision and performance appraisals.

People’s support needs, abilities and desired outcomes were identified, assessed and monitored in personalised care plans. People’s needs were reviewed with their involvement. When required, staff ensured people had timely access to healthcare services in order to maintain their health and wellbeing. This included GPs, physiotherapists, diabetic nurses and dentists. Relatives told us they were listened to and involved.

The service consistently applied the principles and values of Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance. These ensure that people who use the service can live as full a life as possible and achieve the best possible outcomes that include control, choice and independence. One person told us, “You can choose what you wear, who you go out with, you’re not restricted here.”

People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice. Staff demonstrated a good understanding of the principles of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 (MCA 2005) and how it applied to the people there. This provides protection for people who do not have capacity to make decisions for themselves. Staff consistently sought people’s consent before offering to support them with their daily lives.

Staff treated people with respect and kindness. Interactions were warm, natural and punctuated with appropriate humour. Staff had been given time to get to know people well including how they wished to spend their time, who they wanted to spend time with and their preferred means of communication. People’s rig

Inspection areas



Updated 15 February 2020

The service was safe.

Details are in our safe findings below.



Updated 15 February 2020

The service was effective.

Details are in our effective findings below.



Updated 15 February 2020

The service was caring.

Details are in our caring findings below.



Updated 15 February 2020

The service was responsive.

Details are in our responsive findings below.



Updated 15 February 2020

The service was well-led.

Details are in our well-led findings below.