A nursing home and care agency in Bexhill has been placed in special measures after being branded ‘not safe’ by the health watchdog.
Coast Home Care (Whitebriars) was rated as ‘inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in a report published on July 5.
The Bedford Avenue residential home, known as Whitebriars, and the combined home care service was criticised for unsafe medicine management, poor leadership and for not fully assessing new staff’s competency.
Whitebriars owner Kevin Dewhurst believed the rating was harsh and did not wholly represent the care home community involvement.
The CQC did praise the home for being caring as many residents were positive about the care they received during inspections on April 22, 25, and 26.
“Despite the shortfalls, we found that people received good care and were very happy with the service provision,” the report says.
“They said there was consistency of carers and on the whole care staff arrived on time and care was not rushed.
“One person told us, ‘they’re so lovely and do lots of little things that mean a lot, like putting my phone on charge for me.’”
Whitebriars was told to improve in December, 2014, and September last year and the latest inspection was to check improvements had been made.
But the care home failed as the CQC said there was a lack of leadership and oversight, the management of medicine was not safe, accidents were not always recorded and care documents were inadequate.
“The procedures for giving and signing of medicines were inadequate with lots of gaps in the recording of medicines so it was not always clear if they had been given. Medicines required in an emergency situation for one person were not held in the home,” the report says.
But Whitebriars was commended for its service by residents and staff were well-supported and trained.
The home care service was slated for gaps in its employment history, the ineffective on call procedure and irregular audits.
“The manager could not demonstrate that they had fully assessed the competence of new staff before they worked unsupervised,” the report says.
But it was praised by those receiving the service and staff said they felt well supported.
Mr Dewhurst said he will appeal against the CQC’s report as he claimed the breaches they were pulled up on did not warrant an ‘inadequate’ rating.
“We have contested it strongly and we feel that there are breaches in record keeping which is all we are talking about and we feel it’s very disproportionate about what we do,” he said.
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