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Helping Hands Exmouth Limited Good

This service was previously registered at a different address - see old profile


Inspection carried out on 29 January 2020

During a routine inspection

About the service:

Helping Hands Exmouth is registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to provide personal care to people within their own homes. At the time of our inspection, the service was providing personal care and support to 140 people. The service provided care in Exmouth, Cullompton and Honiton.

People’s experience of using this service:

Despite staff changes at the service, the feedback from people who used the services was consistently positive about the quality of their care. People and their relatives were equally positive about the approach of the care workers. For example, they said care workers, “Always bright, cheerful, chatting. It’s quite jolly” and “…they chat and make her laugh. Sit and chat, make a joke, they relate to her.”

Following a new provider buying the service in March 2019, some staff had chosen to leave. However, there was a core group of staff who remained and provided stability during a period of change. New staff were being recruited. Following the departure of a manager appointed by the previous provider, the new provider decided to appoint two new full-time managers, a decision which had been greeted favourably by staff. Work was in progress to make improvements to ensure consistency in the quality of person-centred information in care, including how fluids were recorded and monitored. They had also chosen to be actively involved in concerns and complaints at an early stage in recognition of the need to improve how complaints were managed. However, these changes needed to be embedded and sustained.

People said they felt safe because the staff group were caring and reliable. People continued to be

supported by staff who respected their privacy and dignity. Staff relationships with the people they

supported continued to be caring and supportive. Staffing arrangements were flexible to meet people's individual needs and to respond to changes.

Risk assessments identified when people could be at risk and covered people's physical and mental health needs and the environment they lived in. Feedback from people and staff confirmed the provider recruited staff who suited the caring values of the service and recognised the importance of team work to provide consistent and safe care. People were protected from abuse because staff understood their safeguarding responsibilities.

People were supported by staff who were skilled and understood their needs. Staff were confident about the care they delivered and understood how they contributed to people's health and wellbeing. Referrals were appropriately made to health care services when people's needs changed. People were supported to maintain good health and had access to appropriate services, which ensured they received ongoing healthcare support. Medicine administration was safe.

There was a consistent approach to gain people's consent to care and treatment in line with requirements of the legislation and guidance. Information was in place to ensure people's legal rights were protected. Senior staff assisted the management team with reviews and spot checks to ensure people received a good quality service. Feedback from people using the service and quality assurance records showed this had been achieved.

Rating at last inspection: This service was last inspected in 2017, when it was rated as Outstanding (published April 2017) as an overall rating. At this inspection, the service was rated as Good.

Why we inspected: This inspection was scheduled for follow up based on the last report rating.

Follow up: We will continue to monitor the intelligence we receive about the service. If any concerning

information is received, we may inspect sooner.

For more details, please see the full report which is on the CQC website at

Inspection carried out on 27 April 2017

During a routine inspection

This announced inspection took place at the service’s office in Exmouth on 27 April and 5 May 2017. The provider was given short notice because the location provides a domiciliary care service and we needed to be sure that staff would be available. This was the first time the service had been inspected which resulted in a CQC rating.

Helping Hands Exmouth Ltd provides personal care and support to people living in their own homes. The service covers areas that include East Devon and Mid Devon. At the time of our inspection there were 187 people receiving a personal care service.

When we visited there was a registered manager in post. The registered manager is also one of the directors of the company. 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.

There was strong leadership with a clear set of values which ran through the service. The people using the service and staff were equally valued. The registered manager said ‘We are a family business and those family values run through everything we do.’ This was apparent in the way the management team treated their staff and the people they supported. At the time of the inspection, the agency employed a registered manager, deputy manager and systems manager. The registered manager, who was also the provider, ran the service with the support of their two daughters. It has been operating for over thirty years and its creation resulted from the registered manager’s own personal experience of caring for a person they loved at home. The management team were supported by a range of care managers who advised and supervised care staff, duty workers response workers, care staff and office based staff.

Despite the variety of different roles there was a strong culture of staff working in partnership to achieve the best service possible for people using the service. Staff were very positive about their role within the organisation and told us they felt valued. They spoke highly of the strong management team and praised the quality and quantity of training available. The trainer was passionate regarding their role to enable staff feel confident, competent and skilled so they could provide the best care possible, including end of life care. Staff said the success of the service was based on “building trusting relationships” with staff and people using the service. A new staff member said the good “communication, staff and welcome factor” made them feel part of a team.

The high level of leadership had a positive impact on staff morale. The management team participated in forums and community events to ensure best practice was maintained and based on current legislation. They recognised the risk of social isolation and advocated for people to ensure they had access to their local community and maintain relationships and spiritual beliefs that were important to them. The actions of staff and the management team showed their commitment to reduce people’s social isolation.

People were supported by dedicated staff to eat a well-balanced diet and they had access to health professionals to make sure they kept as healthy as possible. People were supported by compassionate and caring staff who listened to their preferences. People received person centred care from staff who knew each person well and what mattered to them. Care, treatment and support plans were personalised and up to date.

People benefited from a service that put them at the heart of how it was run. On-going systems to gather feedback from people, their relatives and staff were an integral part of their quality assurance system. This was achieved through a range of reviews at different times, face to face meetings, surveys, involvement groups