7 June 2022
We carried out this inspection under Section 60 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (the Act) as part of our regulatory functions. We checked whether the provider was meeting the legal requirements and regulations associated with the Act. We looked at the overall quality of the service and provided a rating for the service under the Care Act 2014.
Two inspectors carried out the inspection.
Service and service type
This service provides care and support to people living in ‘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.
This service is required to have a registered manager. A registered manager is a person who has registered with the Care Quality Commission to manage the service. This means that they and the provider are legally responsible for how the service is run and for the quality and safety of the care provided.
At the time of our inspection the manager in post was in the process of registering with the CQC.
Notice of inspection
This inspection was announced.
We gave the service 24 hours’ notice of the inspection. This was because we needed to be sure someone would be in the office to assist our inspection, also people are often out and we wanted to be sure there would be people at home to speak with us.
What we did before inspection
We reviewed information we had received about the service since the last inspection. We sought feedback from the local authority and professionals who work with the service. We used the information the provider sent us in the provider information return. This is information providers are required to send us annually with key information about their service, what they do well, and improvements they plan to make. We used all this information to plan our inspection.
During the inspection
We communicated with three people who used the service and two relatives about their experience of the care provided. Some people who used the service who were unable to talk with us used different ways of communicating including using Makaton, pictures, photos, symbols, objects and their body language.
We are improving how we hear people’s experience and views on services, when they have limited verbal communication. We have trained some CQC team members to use a symbol-based communication tool. We checked that this was a suitable communication method and that people were happy to use it with us. We did this by reading their care and communication plans and speaking to staff or relatives and the person themselves. In this report, we used this communication tool with one person to tell us their experience.
We spoke with five members of staff including the manager, carers, senior carers, care coordinator and nominated individual. The nominated individual is responsible for supervising the management of the service on behalf of the provider.
We reviewed a range of records. This included three people’s care records and medication records. We looked at two staff files in relation to recruitment and staff supervision. A variety of records relating to the management of the service, including policies and procedures were reviewed.
7 June 2022
We expect health and social care providers to guarantee people with a learning disability and autistic people respect, equality, dignity, choices and independence and good access to local communities that most people take for granted. ‘Right support, right care, right culture’ is the guidance CQC follows to make assessments and judgements about services supporting people with a learning disability and autistic people and providers must have regard to it.
About the service
EL Marsh Supported Living is registered to provide personal care to adults in their own homes. People had differing support needs including learning disabilities, mental health conditions and physical disabilities. At the time of inspection nine people were receiving the regulated activity.
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 the inspection six people were receiving support with personal care.
People’s experience of using this service and what we found
The staff supported people to have the maximum possible choice, control and independence over their own lives. People were supported by staff to pursue their interests. The provider worked with people to plan for when they experienced periods of distress so that their freedoms were restricted only if there was no alternative. Staff did everything they could to avoid restraining people. The service recorded when staff restrained people, and staff learned from those incidents and how they might be avoided or reduced. Staff supported people to take part in activities and pursue their interests in their local area and to interact online with people who had shared interests. Staff supported people to make decisions following best practice in decision-making. Staff communicated with people in ways that met their needs. Staff supported people to play an active role in maintaining their own health and wellbeing.
Staff promoted equality and diversity in their support for people. They understood people’s cultural needs and provided culturally appropriate care. Staff understood how to protect people from poor care and abuse. The service worked well with other agencies to do so. Staff had training on how to recognise and report abuse and they knew how to apply it. People who had individual ways of communicating, using body language, sounds, Makaton (a form of sign language), pictures and symbols could interact comfortably with staff and others involved in their care and support because staff had the necessary skills to understand them. People’s care, treatment and support plans reflected their range of needs and this promoted their wellbeing and enjoyment of life. Staff and people cooperated to assess risks people might face. Where appropriate, staff encouraged and enabled people to take positive risks.
People led inclusive and empowered lives because of the ethos, values, attitudes and behaviours of the management and staff. People were supported by staff who understood best practice in relation to the wide range of strengths, impairments or sensitivities people with a learning disability and autistic people may have. This meant people received compassionate and empowering care that was tailored to their needs. People and those important to them, including advocates, were involved in planning their care. The service enabled people and those important to them to work with staff to develop the service. Staff valued and acted upon people’s views. People’s quality of life was enhanced by the service’s culture of improvement and inclusivity. Staff ensured risks of a closed culture were minimised so that people received support based on transparency, respect and inclusivity.
For more details, please see the full report which is on the CQC website at www.cqc.og.uk.
Rating at last inspection and update
The last rating for this service was inadequate (published 23 November 2021) and there were 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 we found improvements had been made and the provider was no longer in breach of regulations.
This service has been in Special Measures since 23 November 2021. During this inspection the provider demonstrated that improvements have been made. The service is no longer rated as inadequate overall or in any of the key questions. Therefore, this service is no longer in Special Measures.
Why we inspected
We undertook this inspection to assess that the service is applying the principles of Right support right care right culture. This inspection was carried out to follow up on action we told the provider to take at the last inspection.
We looked at infection prevention and control measures under the Safe key question. We look at this in all inspections even if no concerns or risks have been identified. This is to provide assurance that the service can respond to COVID-19 and other infection outbreaks effectively.
You can read the report from our last comprehensive inspection, by selecting the ‘all reports’ link for El Marsh Supported Living on our website at www.cqc.org.uk.
We will continue to monitor information we receive about the service, which will help inform when we next inspect.