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Archived: Star Care Requires improvement

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Reports


Inspection carried out on 8 November 2016

During a routine inspection

We undertook an inspection of Star Care on 8 November 2016. The inspection was announced, which meant that the provider knew we would be visiting. This is because we wanted to ensure that the provider, or someone who could act on their behalf, would be available to support the inspection. When the service was last inspected in June 2014 no breaches of the Health and Social Care (Regulated Activities) Regulations were identified.

Star Care provides personal care and support to older people in their own homes in the Kingswood and Keynsham areas of Bristol. At the time of our inspection there were 29 people receiving personal care and support from Star Care.

A registered manager was 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 2008 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

People’s medicines were not always managed safely. The recording of medicines was not effective and systems were not in place to check medicines administration. Recruitment processes were in place but they were not consistently completed. Risk assessments identified potential risks to people but did not always give guidance to staff on how risks could be reduced.

The service was not always effective because staff had not received key training such as safeguarding, medicine awareness and the Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005. The training staff received was not always consistent. Staff had an induction when they joined the service and were supported through regular supervisions.

People spoke positively about the quality of care and support given by Star Care. Care was delivered on time and in accordance with people’s wishes. Staff were kind and caring and treated people with dignity and respect. People had developed good relationships with care staff.

The service was not always responsive as care records did not give enough detail about people and how they wished to be supported. People had access to the complaints procedure and felt comfortable in raising any concerns. The service responded to people’s changing needs and were flexible in their approach. Feedback from people was gained about the service they received from Star Care which was very positive.

The service was not always well led as no audits were undertaken to monitor the quality of the service provided. In addition we found a safeguarding notification had not been sent to the Commission as required. People and staff spoke highly of the registered manager. Staff felt supported and valued in their role. A positive team culture was in place which ensured person centred care was delivered. Staff were kept informed of any changes and regular meetings took place.

We found three breaches of the Health and Social care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014. In addition, a breach of the Care Quality Commission (Registration) Regulations 2009 was also identified. You can see what action we told the provider to take at the end of the full version of this report.

Inspection carried out on 12 June 2014

During a routine inspection

The inspection was carried out by one inspector, who answered the five questions; Is the service safe? Is the service effective? Is the service caring? Is the service responsive? Is the service well led?

Below is a summary of what we found. The summary is based on our observations during the inspection, speaking with people using the service, their relatives, and the staff supporting them and from looking at records.

If you want to see the evidence supporting our summary please read the full report.

Is the service safe?

People were treated with respect and dignity by the staff. People told us they felt safe. Safeguarding procedures were robust and staff understood how to safeguard the people they supported.

Systems were in place to make sure that managers and staff learnt from events such as accidents and incidents, complaints, concerns, whistleblowing and investigations. This reduced the risks to people and helped the service to continually improve.

The registered manager set the staff rotas, they took people’s care needs into account when making decisions about the numbers, qualifications, skills and experience required. This helped to ensure that people’s needs were always met.

Recruitment practice was safe and thorough. No staff had been subject to disciplinary action. Policies and procedures were in place to make sure that unsafe practice was identified and people were protected.

Is the service effective?

People’s health and care needs were assessed with them, and they were involved in writing their plans of care. Specialist mobility and equipment needs had been identified in care plans where required. People said that their care plans were up to date and reflected their current needs.

Is the service caring?

People were supported by kind and attentive staff. We saw that care workers showed patience and gave encouragement when supporting people. People commented, “I’m delighted with what the manager provides, she has the qualities of providing me with high calibre staff”, “They don’t miss any calls and they’re always on time”, “They work hard and are on time”, “They encourage my relative, they’ll do anything for them.” A relative said, “It’s brilliant, I can go to work and not worry.”

People using the service and their relatives completed an annual satisfaction survey. Where shortfalls or concerns were raised these were addressed.

Is the service responsive?

People knew how to make a complaint if they were unhappy. Two people had made a complaint and both were satisfied with the outcomes. People can therefore be assured that complaints are investigated and action is taken as necessary.

Is the service well-led?

The service worked well with other agencies and services to make sure people received their care in a joined up way.

Staff were clear about their roles and responsibilities. Staff had a good understanding of the ethos of the service and quality assurance processes were in place. This helped to ensure that people received a good service at all times.

Staff told us they were clear about their roles and responsibilities. Staff had a good understanding of the ethos of the home and quality assurance processes were in place. This helped to ensure that people received a good quality service at all times.

Inspection carried out on 22 April 2013

During a routine inspection

We met with two people in their own home and spoke with one person by telephone. The people we met were complimentary about the service they received and the staff. They said they had no complaints about the service with one person adding that nothing had ever gone wrong. We were told that staff arrived on time and were friendly. People said that staff always told them in advance of what support they were going to give.

The person we telephoned told us they had been using the service for several years. They told us they had two calls each day a longer call in the morning and shorter call in the evening. They received personal care and said they were in control of the processes involved.

People agreed to the care plan devised to support them. Records were maintained of the care given and people had access to these in their homes. We saw replicated documents at the office.

Where people needed support with their medicines they signed to consent to this and risk assessments were carried out. Staff had completed training in the administration of medicines and maintained records of when they had supported people in this area.

We spoke with several staff as they called into the office for various reasons. We observed how they were interacting and getting along well. This showed there were good relationships and we were told about the good team working. One member of staff told us they preferred to work for a small agency. They said there was a clear focus on ‘care’.

Inspection carried out on 28 November 2012

During a routine inspection

We visited three people in their own home. One of them told us they” were happy with the care received”. They said they were “very pleased with the agency, they let us know if there is going to be any changes or if they are going to be late. We’ve never been left in the lurch”. Another person we spoke with by telephone confirmed they had never had missed calls and were very satisfied with the service they received.

The other people we spoke with told us they used Star Care for cleaning initially but had changed from their previous care provider to Star for personal care because the service from the previous provider was poor. They told us that sometimes “staff went beyond their duties” and gave us examples of this such as shopping in their own time. They described staff as “very likeable” and said they felt respected.

We spoke with a relative. They had previously experienced poor service from another provider. They said that since being with this agency they had ”got on very well since the start”. They said that inevitably, on occasions, care staff were late but on these occasions they received a call from the office to alert them.

One member of staff said they enjoyed their work as it was “very rewarding”. They went on to say that although they worked as part of a small team they felt it was a “good team”. They described the managements as “supportive, flexible and accommodating”. Another member of staff we spoke with described the staff team as “very caring”.