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London Borough of Merton - Supported Living Service

Overall: Good read more about inspection ratings

Merton Civic Centre, London Road, Morden, Surrey, SM4 5DX (020) 8545 3676

Provided and run by:
London Borough of Merton

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Background to this inspection

Updated 22 March 2019

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

This was a comprehensive inspection. The inspection took place on 5 and 6 February 2019 and was announced. We gave the provider 48 hours’ notice of the inspection because managers are sometimes out of the office supporting staff or visiting people who use the service. We needed to be sure that managers would be available to speak with us during our inspection.

The inspection was carried out by a single inspector and an expert by experience. An expert by experience is a person who has personal experience of using or caring for someone who uses this type of care service for example people with a learning or physical disability, and/or a mental health concern.

Before our inspection we reviewed information we held about the service. This included statutory notifications received from the provider since the last inspection. We used information the provider sent us in the Provider Information Return. This is information we require providers to send us at least once annually to give some key information about the service, what the service does well and improvements they plan to make.

During the inspection we visited the services head office and spoke with the registered manager. We looked at a range of records relating to the management of the service. We also visited two of the supported living schemes and spoke with 10 people and five staff. We looked at six support plans.

After the inspection an expert by experience telephoned four people to ask for their opinion of the service they were receiving. They also spoke with three staff.

We have included comments from all the responses we received in our report.

Overall inspection


Updated 22 March 2019

London Borough of Merton Supported Living Scheme provides personal care and support to people living in supported living schemes within the borough. This service provides care and support to people living in five ‘supported living’ settings, 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 providers of housing are Wandle Housing, Clarion Housing Group and Evolve Housing.

London Borough of Merton Supported Living Scheme provides support to people of all ages with learning and/or a physical disabilities and mental health concerns who live in their own individual flats. At the time of our inspection the provider was supporting 39 people who lived in five different supported living settings in the Borough.

Not everyone using the service receives regulated activity; CQC only inspects the service being received by people provided with ‘personal care’; help with tasks related to personal hygiene and eating. Where they do we also take into account any wider social care provided.

The supported living service has been developed and designed in line with the values that underpin the Registering the Right Support and other best practice guidance. These values include the promotion of choice, independence and inclusion, so people with learning disabilities and autism can live as ordinary a life as any citizen.

At our last inspection we rated the service Good. 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 on-going 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.

People were safe in their homes. Staff could explain to us how to keep people safe from abuse and neglect. People had suitable risk assessments in place. Recruitment practices were safe and there were sufficient staff to meet people’s needs. Staff were trained in medicine administration and the checks we made confirmed that people were supported to receive their medicines in a way that they had agreed. Effective measures were taken to help prevent and control infection.

People were supported by staff who received appropriate training and support. Staff had the skills, experience and a good understanding of how 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; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice.

When required people were supported to prepare meals to meet their nutritional needs. When required staff worked with people's GP and other healthcare professionals to ensure they stayed well and comfortable.

People told us staff respected their privacy and treated them with dignity. People's needs were assessed before they started to use the service and care was planned and delivered in response to their needs. The provider had arrangements in place to respond appropriately to people's concerns and complaints. Systems were in place to support people with their end of life care when needed.

Systems were in place to monitor and improve the quality of the service. The provider had effective quality assurance systems to monitor the scheme's processes. These systems helped ensure people received the care they needed as detailed in their support plans.

The registered manager had a clear understanding of their management role and responsibilities and the provider's legal obligations towards CQC. The registered manager worked effectively with other organisations to ensure staff followed best practice. The service had good links with other resources and organisations in the local community to support people with their needs.