CQC takes action to protect people at Halifax care home

Published: 10 April 2024 Page last updated: 10 April 2024

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has rated Summerfield House Nursing Home in Halifax, West Yorkshire, inadequate, and placed it into special measures to protect people following an inspection in January and February.

Summerfield House Nursing Home is a residential care home providing nursing and personal care for up to 107 people, some of whom are living with dementia.

The inspection was prompted in part due to concerns received about the management of the home, people’s care and treatment, and how their privacy and dignity was maintained. The inspection was also prompted by notifications received regarding incidents where people's safety, health and wellbeing had been put at risk. These incidents are subject to further investigation by CQC as to whether any further regulatory action should be taken. As a result, this inspection didn’t examine the circumstances of the incidents.

Inspectors looked at the areas of safe, caring, and well-led at this inspection. Following this inspection, the overall rating for the home dropped from requires improvement to inadequate.  Safe and well-led dropped from requires improvement to inadequate and caring dropped from good to requires improvement. Responsive and effective weren’t inspected and remain rated requires improvement.

The service has been placed in special measures which means it will be kept under close review by CQC to keep people safe and it will be monitored to check sufficient improvements have been made. CQC is also taking further regulatory action which will be reported on when legally able to do so.

Sheila Grant, CQC deputy director of operations in the north, said:

“When we inspected Summerfield House, we found widespread and significant shortfalls in the management and oversight of the service. There were several areas of concern where people’s safety, care and dignity was being compromised due to standards that had been allowed to slip.

“Leaders took action during and after the inspection in response to the concerns raised and an action plan has been put in place. An additional senior management team was also being brought in to support staff, so we expect to see the necessary improvements being made as quickly as possible to ensure nobody comes to harm.

“We saw care records that showed repeated occasions where staff had been physically assaulted by people who were distressed. During the inspection we saw people showing signs of distress and calling out for support from staff, but they were often ignored which is totally unacceptable.

“We observed that some staff were task focused and didn’t communicate with people when providing support. For example, we saw people being moved in their chairs by staff without any prior explanation or discussion. We also saw staff referring to people by their room numbers instead of their names which is degrading and disrespectful.

“However, we did see some positive areas of care. Despite some staff not treating people with dignity and respect, we did see some who were patient, gentle and kind and listened to people. We also observed people enjoying activities and one-to-one time with staff members.

“We have told leaders where we expect to see rapid and widespread improvements and we will continue to monitor the home closely to keep people safe during this time. We will return to check on their progress and won’t hesitate to take further action if people aren’t receiving the care they have a right to expect.”

Inspectors found:

  • Care wasn’t person-centred, and people's needs and preferences weren’t always met
  • There weren’t always enough staff to meet people's needs and keep them safe
  • Lessons learned from incidents weren’t always acted upon
  • People weren’t always protected from the risk of abuse and improper treatment
  • Recruitment processes weren’t robust and staff training wasn’t kept up to date
  • Records showed medicines weren’t always available in the home which placed people at risk of harm
  • People's personal histories and cultural needs weren’t always recorded.


  • People were supported to stay in touch with friends and relatives and there were no restrictions on visiting
  • The environment was clean and well maintained. Infection control was well managed.

The report will be published on CQC’s website in the next few days.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.