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Inspection carried out on 16 November 2018

During a routine inspection

This inspection took place on 16 November 2018 and was announced. Equal People Mencap provides care and support to people with a learning disability living in their own homes. Not everyone using Equal People Mencap receives a regulated activity; CQC only inspects the service being received by people provided with ‘personal care’; help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. Where they do we also take into account any wider social care provided. The care service has been developed and designed in line with the values that underpin the Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance. These values include choice, promotion of independence and inclusion. People with learning disabilities and autism using the service can live as ordinary a life as any citizen. At the time of our inspection two people were receiving personal care from the service.

At our last inspection of 5 April 2016, we rated the service good. At this inspection we found the evidence continued to support the rating of good and there was no evidence or information from our inspection and ongoing monitoring that demonstrated serious risks or concerns. This inspection report is written in a shorter format because our overall rating of the service has not changed since our last inspection. We found the service remained Good.

There was a registered manager at this location. 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 were enough staff available to safely support people. Staff managed people’s medicines in a safe way. Staff understood how to respond if they suspected people were being abused. Staff had received training in safeguarding adults at risk. Risks to people were assessed and management plans developed to guide staff on how to prevent and reduce avoidable harms to people. Lessons were learned from incidents and when things went wrong. Staff followed infection control procedures to reduce risks of infection.

Staff assessed people’s needs following recommended guidance. People were supported to meet their nutritional needs. Staff supported people to access health and social care services they required to maintain their health and well-being. Staff worked closely with other services to ensure people’s care and support were effectively delivered.

Staff continued to be well supported in their roles to be effective. They received regular training, supervisions and were appraised annually. Staff and the registered manager understood their roles and responsibilities under the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005. People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible; the policies and systems in the service support this practice. People consented to their care before it was delivered. Staff supported people to made decisions appropriately and promoted their rights.

Staff knew the people they supported including how to respond when they became anxious or presented behaviours which challenged. Staff treated people with dignity and respect. Staff encouraged and supported people to maintain relationships important to them. Staff communicated with people in the way they understood.

People had support plans in place which set out their needs and how their individual needs would be met. People’s needs and support plans were reviewed and updated regularly to reflect their current needs. The provider provided information to people in accessible formats.

People were encouraged to follow their interests and develop daily living skills. People took part in a range of activities they enjoyed. Staff promoted people’s independence in the way they supported them. Staff treated p

Inspection carried out on 5 April 2016

During a routine inspection

This inspection took place on 5 and 6 April 2016. The first day of our inspection was unannounced. The service was meeting all of the regulations we checked the last time we visited on 30 January 2014.

Equal People Mencap provides support with the activities of daily living to people with learning disabilities living in the community. The service covers the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea and is based in the north Kensington area. There were 41 people using the service at the time of our visit.

The service had a registered manager in post. 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 using the service expressed positive views about the service and the staff. People felt safe and were supported by staff who knew how to keep them safe. Risks to people's health and safety were assessed and appropriately managed and people were supported by a sufficient number of staff.

The service received referrals from social workers. This information was used to inform and develop care plans in consultation with people and their family members (where appropriate). This ensured people’s support needs could be identified and risk assessments completed before staff began working with people.

People’s risk assessments covered a range of issues including personal care, finances and budgeting and access to community facilities. When required, staff supported people to make appointments and attend health appointments. There were protocols in place to respond to any medical emergencies or significant changes in a person’s health and well-being.

Where staff were responsible for prompting people’s medicines, staff had completed training in medicines administration and completed appropriate recording charts. People received the support they needed to safely manage their medicines and (where appropriate) were encouraged to be as independent as possible in this task.

Staff had the knowledge and skills to care for people effectively and felt well supported. Staff were familiar with the provider’s safeguarding policies and procedures and able to describe the actions they would take if they suspected abuse was taking place.

The provider was meeting the requirements of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and protecting people’s rights. The staff we spoke with understood what the MCA is designed to do and described how they supported people to make decisions where possible. We saw that appropriate people had been involved in the decision making process and a care plan put into place which reflected the decision. Staff were aware of such decisions and told us that they still helped people to make their own decisions where possible.

People’s independence was promoted. People were supported to do the things they wanted to do, such as attend college, sport and recreational facilities. Staff were aware of people’s specific dietary needs and preferences and people received the level of support they required to have enough to eat and drink.

There were arrangements in place to assess and monitor the quality and effectiveness of the service. The provider promoted people’s involvement in the way the service was run and sought feedback from people using the service and staff on a regular basis; this included surveys, staff team meetings and spot checks carried out by the registered manager. 02

Inspection carried out on 30 January 2014

During a routine inspection

At the time of our inspection, the service provided care and support to twenty five people with a learning disability in their own homes and in the community. We spoke to six people visiting the Equal People Resource Centre, four care staff and the Registered Manager.

People�s views and experiences were taken into account in the way the service was provided and delivered. People we spoke to very happy with the care and support they received to live independent lives. �They help me do what I want. I know they are always there�. �They help me with around the house and remind me about things�. �I�m always meet with staff to talk about what I need�.

Everyone had a care plan centred on their goals, needs and choices. Staff knew people well, and had regular meetings with them. Risks were assessed and appropriately managed and balanced with ensuring people�s independence.

The service protected people from the risk of abuse and other risks because they took a proactive, inclusive approach to keeping people safe.

People were cared for by staff who were supported to deliver care and support safely and to an appropriate standard. All staff received regular training to maintain and extend their competency. They also had supervision at least monthly and had annual appraisals.

People were made aware of the complaints system. People who used the service told us they had been made aware of the provider's complaints procedure and knew how to make a complaint.

Inspection carried out on 29 January 2013

During a routine inspection

Staff told us that they always sought people's consent before any care and support activities were carried out. One person said that "staff carry out activities that I give them permission to". All staff had attended basic awareness training on the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and had annual refresher updates.

Staff completed risk assessments and support plans for each person using the service. Key stakeholders as well as the person themselves, were involved in the development of support plans. People told us that they were satisfied with the support they received. One person described staff as �very good�. People knew who their support workers were and what their support plans involved.

There were clear infection control guidelines in pictorial format for staff. Staff told us that infection control risk assessments were carried out in people�s homes. Support staff had access to personal protective equipment such as aprons and gloves and there was information available to staff about how to manage blood and body fluids in people�s homes.

Applicants were interviewed by a panel of four people and people who use the service were also involved in the process. The provider obtained training records, two references and a Criminal Records Bureau check from successful candidates.

Records we saw were clear, legible and concise. Records were kept securely and could be located promptly when needed. People�s records were kept in a locked cabinet in the staff office.

Inspection carried out on 16 September 2011

During a routine inspection

On this occasion we did not speak to people about the service. We did review completed quality monitoring questionnaires that the agency had sent to the people that use the service. People generally made positive comments about the service. They reported that they are involved in daily decision-making about the care provided and felt respected by staff. They said the staff and the agency were generally very approachable, listened to their views, acted on them and treated them with respect.

Some people commented that the agency were in regular contact, sometimes visited them, always asked them what they needed and they felt they were getting the service they wanted. They said the service they received was regularly reviewed, updated, delivered on time and they felt safe using it.

They found staff friendly, competent and prepared to adapt their working methods to provide a good quality of service.

They were also aware of how to make a complaint and who to.