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Inspection Summary

Overall summary & rating


Updated 26 September 2018

This comprehensive inspection took place on 13 and 14 August 2018; the first day of the inspection was unannounced.

At our last inspection in March 2017, we identified one breach of legal requirements; this was because the provider’s recruitment processes were not sufficiently robust. We asked the provider to complete an action plan to show what they would do and by when to improve the key question ‘Is the service safe?’ to at least good.

Eachstep Blackburn is a ‘care home’. People in care homes receive accommodation and nursing or personal care as single package under one contractual agreement. CQC regulates both the premises and the care provided, and both were looked at during this inspection.

Eachstep Blackburn is registered to provide accommodation for up to 64 people who require nursing or personal care. The service is purpose built and specialises in providing care to people who are living with a dementia. The home is divided into three households, each of which is decorated to a high standard and provides themed areas to promote social interaction. Accommodation is provided in single en-suite bedrooms. The home also provides a cinema, vintage tea room and secure garden area. At the time of our inspection there were a total of 61 people using the service.

There was a registered manager in place. 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.

At the last inspection in March 2017, the service was rated as good. At this inspection, the rating has improved to outstanding.

The service has built on their previous success and sustained the outstanding level of person-centred care provided to people who lived in Eachstep Blackburn. The philosophy of the service to ‘care with passion’ was exemplified by all the staff who worked in the home. People received personalised care which was extremely responsive to their needs and wishes.

People were supported by staff who were extremely kind and caring. During the inspection. We observed all staff, including ancillary staff, took care to ensure all their interactions with people were meaningful and caring; this helped to ensure people felt they mattered to the staff who supported them. People told us that Eachstep Blackburn felt like a family. Throughout the inspection, we saw numerous examples of this family atmosphere with relatives, people who used the service and staff having conversations, laughing and showing they cared for each other

We heard of numerous examples where staff had gone above and beyond what might normally be expected of them in their role to help ensure people who lived in the home had an excellent experience. Typical feedback provided by people who lived in the home included, “Staff are very good, they’re lovely”, “I love them, they’re so kind”, “The staff are lovely”, “Staff are lovely; they’re always around for us” and “The staff are very kind, very friendly and chatty.”

Staff were extremely responsive to people’s needs. We saw examples of staff anticipating people’s needs which showed they had an excellent understanding of how individuals communicated, including people who had limited verbal communication. A strong emphasis was placed on engaging people in meaningful activity which met their individual interests; to support this the home had developed links with a wide range of community based organisations and used these to help improve the quality of life for people who lived in Eachstep Blackburn. In addition, all care staff understood that it was an important part of their responsibilities to engage people in activities on a day to day basis and we saw this was put into practice throughout the inspection.

Staff spoke consistently about Eachstep Blackburn being a

Inspection areas



Updated 26 September 2018

The service was safe.

People told us they felt safe in Eachstep Blackburn and had no concerns about the care they received.

Staff had been safely recruited. They had received training in safeguarding adults and knew the correct action to take if they witnessed or suspected abuse.

People were cared for in a safe and clean environment.



Updated 26 September 2018

The service was effective.

Staff received the induction, supervision and training they required to be able to deliver high-quality, compassionate care.

Staff understood the principles of the Mental Capacity Act (2005). Arrangements were in place to ensure people's rights were protected when they were unable to consent to their care and treatment in the service.

The environment was designed and arranged to promote people's freedom, independence and wellbeing.



Updated 26 September 2018

The service was exceptionally caring.

People told us staff were extremely kind, caring and respectful towards them. Throughout the inspection we observed numerous examples of very caring interactions between staff, people who lived in Eachstep Blackburn and their families.

Staff were passionate about providing people with person-centred care that helped them to achieve their goals and aspirations. We saw that staff regularly went the ‘extra mile’ to help ensure people received high quality compassionate care that promoted their independence.

Staff were extremely skilled at helping people to express their views and wishes.



Updated 26 September 2018

The service was exceptionally responsive.

People received care that was personalised to their individual needs. There were no set routines to follow and people were able to decide for themselves what they wanted to do each day.

People were supported to take part in a wide range of activities that were tailored to meet their interests and goals. The service was proactive in working with volunteers to enhance the opportunities for social interaction for people who lived in Eachstep Blackburn.

People using the service and families were actively encouraged to give their views and raise any concerns or complaints. People's feedback was valued and used to make improvements in the service.



Updated 26 September 2018

The service was exceptionally well-led.

The registered manager led by example and inspired the staff to provide the best possible person-centred care and experience for people and their families. They regularly contributed to the evidence base regarding best practice in the care of people living with dementia.

Without exception, staff told us they enjoyed working at Eachstep Blackburn and demonstrated a commitment to providing people with high quality, compassionate care. The provider had a number of schemes in place to reward staff who were recognised as providing exceptional levels of care.

The service had developed strong links with community organisations which were used to enhance the experience of people who lived in the home.