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Ace Social Care Requires improvement

The provider of this service changed - see old profile

Reports


Inspection carried out on 20 August 2020

During an inspection looking at part of the service

Ace Social Care provides care and support for people living in their own homes. The provider is registered to provide care and support to people in the community. 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 our inspection the service was supporting 13 people with their personal care and support needs.

People’s experience and what we found:

Some improvements had been made since our last inspection which took place in June 2019. We found the service had made positive changes in their staff recruitment process, and were lawfully obtaining and acting in accordance with people's consent. However, governance arrangements were not as effective or reliable as they should be. Further improvement was needed in the quality assurance processes to identify shortfalls and to drive improvement.

At our last inspection there were some shortfalls in the way medicines were managed; there were no protocols in place setting out when medication prescribed to be taken on an "as and when" basis should be administered, these protocols were still not in place. Also, staff could not remember having their competency checked and there was no record of this. The registered manager took immediate action to resolve this.

People were safeguarded from the risks of abuse, staff received training in this area and knew how to recognise and report abuse. Staff were confident that appropriate action would be taken to keep people safe. In the main, risks associated with people's care were identified and risk assessments were in place to minimise the risk. Staff were knowledgeable about risks associated with people's care. We found a potential risk in the way a person’s medicines were stored, which had not been addressed. The registered manager took immediate action to resolve this.

There were sufficient staff available to meet people's needs and to socially engage with them whilst adhering to the current restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The registered manager had managed the current COVID-19 pandemic well and implemented effective procedures. Staff we spoke with felt there were enough staff available and were able to meet people's needs.

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.

People were happy with the quality of care and support they or their family member received. Communication with the registered manager was a strong feature and people spoke of care which met individual needs, and which could be reviewed and adapted. The management team supported staff to deliver person centred care to people. The registered manager engaged people in the service and listened to their comments. Many described staff as being, ‘friendly and caring.’ Relatives felt involved in the care of their loved ones and felt staff were adequately trained.

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

Rating at last inspection and update

The last rating for this service was requires improvement (published 17 July 2019) and there were three breaches of regulation. The provider completed an action plan after the last inspection to show what they would do and by when to improve. At this inspection enough improvement had not been made and the provider was still in breach of one regulation. This service has been rated requires improvement for the last two consecutive inspections.

Why we inspected:

We undertook this focused inspection in line with our current methodology in the COVID-19 pandemic, to check they had followed their action plan and to confirm they now met legal requirements. This report only covers our findings in relation to

Inspection carried out on 4 June 2019

During a routine inspection

About the service:

Ace Social Care is a domiciliary care agency providing personal care to people in their own homes. At the time of this inspection it was providing services to around 15 people.

People’s experience of using this service:

People’s relatives praised the standard of care they had observed, and told us in their experience staff were kind and respectful. They told us staff were usually on time for care visits, and said that most of the time care was delivered by the same staff, which they said was important to them.

Relatives told us they were regularly asked for their feedback about the service, and said their feedback was always positive. They told us they could contact the registered manager whenever they needed to and said they were quick to respond.

The provider’s arrangements for recruiting staff safely were not sufficiently robust. The provider had, in most cases, relied upon Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks that had been undertaken by staff members’ previous employers, and did not always have records of the work history of employees.

People were not supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff did not support them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests; the policies and systems in the service did not support this practice.

There were some shortfalls in the way medicines were managed; there were no protocols in place setting out when medication prescribed to be taken on an “as and when” basis should be administered, and staff were not recording when they had administered topical medication.

The registered manager knew people using the service and their relatives well, and had a good knowledge of people’s needs. Staff told us the registered manager was very approachable and described them as supportive.

Staff told us they received a good standard of training, and records showed they received a range of training relevant to their roles.

The registered manager carried out audits of the service provided, however these audits had not always identified areas requiring improvement.

We identified three breaches of the Health and Social Care Act (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 relating to consent, good governance and fit and proper persons employed. Details of action we have asked the provider to take can be found at the end of this report

More information is in the full report

Rating at last inspection:

Good. The report was published in December 2016

Why we inspected:

This was a scheduled inspection based on the last 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.

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Inspection carried out on 24 November 2016

During a routine inspection

The inspection took place on 24 November 2016 with the provider being given short notice of the visit to the office in line with our current methodology for inspecting domiciliary care agencies. The service was re-registered with the Commission in June 2016 as the provider changed to a limited company, so this was the first inspection of the service under the new registration.

Ace Social Care provides personal care to people living in their own homes. Its office is based near the centre of Maltby. The agency mainly supports older people, including some people who are living with dementia, and younger people with a physical disability.

The service had a registered manager in post at the time of our inspection. 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 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

At the time of our inspection there were 14 people using the service. We spoke on the telephone with two people who used the service and three relatives. When we asked them about their experiences of using the agency they told us they were happy with the service provided. We saw people had a team of care staff who visited them on a regular basis.

We found the service employed enough staff to meet the needs of the people being supported. Staff had completed various training to meet people’s needs, but staff support sessions were not always provided in line with the company policy. Overall the system for recruiting new staff helped to ensure staff were employed with all of the required employment checks, but there was some inconsistency in records completed. People who used the service praised the staff who supported them and raised no concerns about how their care was delivered.

We found people received a service that was based on their personal needs and wishes. Their needs had been assessed before their care package commenced and where possible they, and their relatives, had been involved in formulating their care plans. Care records sampled identified people’s needs and preferences, as well as any risks associated with their care and the environment they lived in.

Where people needed assistance taking their medication this was administered in a timely way by staff who had been trained to carry out this role.

People were provided with information about how to raise a concern and how it would be addressed. The people we spoke with told us they were confident that any concerns they raised would be dealt with promptly.

The registered manager had a clear oversight of the service, and of the people who were using it. People were encouraged to share their views about the quality of the care provided. Quality assurance systems had been developed to monitor how the service operated and identify areas for improvement.