Residents at a Church Gresley care home who were at risk of falls were forced to navigate uneven flooring and steps, according to a CQC report which said it “requires improvement”.
Staff at Lorraine’s Residential Home, in School Street, have said the building is now being renovated, claiming the report compiled by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) had actually “done them a favour” in highlighting problems already known by staff, and ensuring they were tackled as quickly as possible.
Following its latest inspection on May 23, the care home, which looks after 15 people, some of whom have dementia, was judged as “requires improvement” overall, along with its safety rating, effectiveness and well-led categories. It was judged as “good” in the caring and responsive categories.
The recent inspection is the latest in a list of poor ratings for the care home. Last September, it was judged as “requires improvement” in a re-inspection after the home was originally branded “inadequate”.
In the latest inspection, the report said the safety of residents required improvement. It said: “People were not always protected from harm.
"We saw that there were areas in the home which required maintenance to ensure that people were safely cared for. For example, one person was assessed as being at risk of falls and we saw that they were supported by staff when they mobilised to reduce this risk.
"However, the corridor they needed to walk along to their bedroom had bumps in the flooring which increased their risk of harm as they used equipment to mobilise. There was also an uneven step into their room because the corridor flooring was higher than their bedroom."
The report continued: "Another person was assessed at being at risk of falls but was able to move freely with a mobility aid. However, when we reviewed records we saw that this person had fallen on a few occasions, although without significant injury.
"This demonstrated to us that although risk was recognised and assessments were completed to reduce it, there were areas of the home which were in need of repair and maintenance and this meant that the risk of harm was increased.”
The report also said that recruitment procedures had not been followed to ensure that staff were suitable to work with people.
Manager Maryann Burns said: “We are going to be renovating the building which has already started. There have been issues and we will be making it like new.
“With recruitment procedures it meant that the CRB checks were not coming through quickly enough. Any new employer is always shadowed by a senior member of staff and we have certain protocols that we do follow.”
The report said there were enough staff to meet people’s needs and those staff understood how to protect people from harm. Medicines were managed to ensure that people had them as prescribed.
However, the effectiveness of the home was also assessed as requiring improvement: “When people were unable to make their own decisions it was not clear who had made them for them. Some legal safeguards were not in place to protect people.
The manager told the Burton Mail: “With our care plans we give them as much choice as possible. For me it is to make sure that the best standards are followed. They are always given more choice.”
The report also noted that staff received training to be able to support people well. People had their nutritional and healthcare needs met.
Its well-led category also required improvement because “audits had been completed which highlighted that maintenance work needed to be completed to keep people safe and it had not been actioned. For example, at the last comprehensive inspection we saw that an action from a falls audit was to replace the patterned carpet in the communal area. At this inspection we saw that this action had still not been completed.”
The care home manager said: “With reporting problems they are not always followed up as quickly as we like them to be. The CQC report has done us a favour because it is someone coming in and highlighting the problems and something can be done as soon as possible.
“Our care has always been A1. We have an absolutely fantastic team of staff, and I think the families would agree. We have a really good relationship. At the moment it needs a bit of TLC.”
The CQC agreed that staff and people and their relatives were listened to and supported. It also said: “People had caring supportive relationships with staff. Their privacy and dignity was respected and upheld. Important relationships were encouraged.
“People’s preferences were taken into account when they were supported. Care plans were personal and up to date. Complaints were welcomed and responded to in line with the provider’s procedure."
Manager Maryann Burns added: “The care we give has always been to a high standard. And we do everything we can to make sure our residents are happy.”