This service provides care and support to people living in a ‘supported living’ setting, so that they can live as independently as possible. People’s care and housing are provided under separate contractual agreements. CQC does not regulate premises used for supported living; this inspection looked at people’s personal care and support.
The service is referred to as a ‘convent.’ A convent is either a community of religious sisters, or nuns; or the building used by the community, particularly in the Catholic Church. The premises were not inspected by us because the provider is only regulated for ‘person care.’ People were living in their own homes and the building was owned by the provider.
At our last inspection we rated the service as ‘Good’ in all five key questions. 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.
Following our previous inspection, the agency changed their address for this service. However, this did not include a change of management and services continued to be operated from the same premises location. Therefore, this is not a newly registered service as the Care Quality Commission (CQC). For this reason, we are writing this inspection report as a ‘return to good’ service and not as the first inspection report for this service.
The service had a manager who was registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). A registered manager is a person who has registered with the CQC 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.
People who lived at this service shall be referred to within this report as ‘Sisters’ in accordance with their religious Catholic following. The Sisters who lived at Religious services supported living south (RSSL) agreed to follow the duty of ‘obedience’ as a key part of their religious practices. This meant that Sisters had a duty to comply with the will of another who had the right to command them. In this service this ‘right’ belonged to those superior Sisters chosen as ‘community leaders.’ Community leaders provided extensive, personalised support and advocacy for people at RSSL. Staff and community leaders told us that the service was well managed.
Sisters were protected from abuse by caring and kind care staff who had received training and support to understand how to report safeguarding concerns appropriately. A community leader who visited RSSL also had a ‘lead’ safeguarding role for Saint John of God Hospitaller Services. The provider upheld a policy of ‘non-discrimination on the basis of race, religion, sex, disability or social status.’
Sisters received their medicines safely from staff who had received medication training. Risks to Sisters were assessed and actions taken to mitigate identified risks. Risks of infection were minimised with the use of protective equipment such as gloves and aprons. Staff were planning to complete infection control audits for the service at the time of this inspection.
The Sisters were supported to eat and drink enough with their individual and religious preferences catered for. Staff had received training in their roles and Sisters were supported to access healthcare services when they required this intervention.
Sisters at the service were supported to practice their faith by attending ‘mass’ at the local St. Mary’s church at the top of the road. Staff provided support for those Sisters who required additional help to access the church. There was also a chapel within the service which was accessible for people to use on a daily basis. Others from the wider community, which included a Sister from a neighbouring care home, were invited to attend the chapel.
End of life care was provided by the care staff in conjunction with the community leaders at the service. The provider worked in partnership with healthcare professionals when delivering care to Sisters at the end of their lives. No-one was in the active phase of dying or receiving palliative care at the time of this inspection.
Sisters are supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and community leaders and staff support them in the least restrictive way possible; the policies and systems in the service support this practice. Sisters felt confident to raise concerns either directly with the care staff or with the support of a community leader. Concerns were responded to appropriately and in a timely manner.
Further information is in the detailed findings below.