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Optalis Supporting People Services Also known as START & Independent Living Services

Overall: Good read more about inspection ratings

Trinity Court, Molly Millars Lane, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG41 2PY (0118) 977 8600

Provided and run by:
Optalis Limited

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

Latest inspection summary

On this page

Background to this inspection

Updated 10 May 2019

The inspection

We carried out this inspection under Section 60 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (the Act) as part of our regulatory functions. This inspection was planned to check whether the provider was meeting the legal requirements and regulations associated with the Act, to look at the overall quality of the service, and to provide a rating for the service under the Care Act 2014.

Inspection team

The inspection was carried out by one inspector.

Service and service type

This service is a domiciliary care service. It provides personal care to people living in their own homes. People who use this service live in four ‘supported living’ houses and one person has their own flat in an extra care facility. This enables them to live as independently as possible. People’s care and housing are provided under separate contractual agreements. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) does not regulate premises used for supported living; this inspection looked at people’s personal care and support only.

The service had a manager registered with CQC. This means that they and the provider are legally responsible for how the service is run and for the quality and safety of the care provided. The service also had a nominated individual. The nominated individual is responsible for supervising the management of the service on behalf of the provider.

Notice of inspection

This inspection was announced. We gave the service 48 hours’ notice of the inspection visit because we needed to be sure that the provider or registered manager would be in the office to support the inspection.

What we did before the inspection

We reviewed the information the provider sent us in the provider information return (PIR). This is information providers are required to send us with key information about their service, what they do well, and improvements they plan to make. This information helps support our inspections.

We looked at the PIR and at all the information we had collected about the service. This included previous inspection reports, information received and information about important events the registered manager and others had sent us. We used all of this information to plan our inspection.

During the inspection

We spoke with the registered manager, the nominated individual and the head of regulated services for the provider. We looked at three people's care plans, monitoring records and medication sheets, three staff recruitment files, staff training records and the staff supervision log. We reviewed a number of other documents relating to the management of the service. For example, management audits, incident records, concerns and compliments received and a selection of policies.

After the inspection

We spoke with three people who use the service and received feedback from them and two relatives. We sought feedback from six health and social care professionals and received a response from one.

Overall inspection


Updated 10 May 2019

About the service

Independent Living Services is a domiciliary care service providing personal care to people living in their own homes. At the time of this inspection the service was supporting 13 people with a learning disability and/or who were on the autistic spectrum. Twelve people lived in four shared supported living houses and one person had their own flat in an extra care facility.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) only inspects the service being received by people provided with ‘personal care’, which is help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. We do not inspect the premises people live in. Not everyone using Independent Living Services receives personal care but where they do we also take into account any wider social care provided.

People’s experience of using this service

People were treated with exceptional care and kindness. Staff demonstrated a strong empathy for people at the service and were skilled in identifying and supporting people at times of emotional distress. Staff used innovative ways to help people manage and reduce their anxieties, leading to people gaining in confidence and being able to enjoy their lives more. They were consulted about their support and could change how things were done if they wanted to. People were treated with respect and their dignity was upheld. This was confirmed by people we spoke with and relatives who provided feedback. People's diverse needs were identified and met. People's right to confidentiality was protected.

The principles and values of Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance ensure people with a learning disability and/or autism can live as full a life as possible. This includes achieving the best outcomes that include control, choice and independence. At this inspection the provider had ensured they were applied. The outcomes for people using the service reflected the principles and values of Registering the Right Support by promoting choice and control, independence and inclusion. People's support focused on them having as many opportunities as possible for them to gain new skills and become more independent. This resulted in them leading fuller lives than they had previously.

People were protected from the risks of abuse and said they felt safe with the staff providing their support and care. Risks to people’s personal safety had been assessed and plans were in place to minimise those risks. Staff recruitment and staffing levels supported people to stay safe while working towards their goals and going about their lives.

People received effective care and support from staff who knew them well and were well trained. People received effective health care and support. Medicines were stored and handled correctly and safely. People's rights to make their own decisions were protected. They 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 supported this practice.

People received care and support that was personalised to meet their individual needs. People were able to enjoy a number of activities, based on their known likes and preferences. Staff continually looked for ways to improve and enhance people's lives by exploring new activities and employment people could participate in.

People benefitted from staff who were happy in their work and felt well managed and supported. People benefitted from a service which had an open and inclusive culture and encouraged suggestions and ideas for improvement from people who use the service, their relatives and staff.

For more details, please see the full report which is on the CQC website at www.cqc.org.uk

Rating at last inspection

At the last inspection the service was rated Good (report published 15 December 2016).

Why we inspected

This was a planned inspection based on the previous rating.

Follow up

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