Care home doing better, say inspectors

A KINGSWOOD care home has made progress since its last inspection but hasn’t overturned its “Requires Improvement” rating.

Kingswood Court care home in Soundwell Road received an unannounced inspection from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in April, after receiving a “Requires improvement” rating at its previous inspection in August last year.

The inspectors were checking on progress on the agreed improvement plan for the home, where 46 people aged 65 and over receive residential, nursing or dementia care. They only inspected whether the home was Safe and Well-Led, the two areas where regulations were being breached when inspectors last visited, and not enough had changed to alter the rating.

Although improvements had been made, inspectors reported that the “governance system continued to be ineffective”. For example, records on food and fluid intake for at-risk patients had gaps.

Good points noted included that the previously understaffed home was now fully staffed, and “residents no longer spent long periods of time in wheelchairs”. The CQC also observed improvements to the way medicines were given, with doses being recorded and safe gaps left in between doses now. 

Inspectors praised care staff and said: “Staff interacted and supported people in a kind and friendly way. Staff smiled at people and spoke to people as they passed. The atmosphere at the home was calm and relaxed, which was very different to the last inspection.”

Feedback from residents about the staff was mixed. One resident said: “They are answering call bells more quickly now, within five minutes.” However, another resident said: “They rush in and out, a couple make an effort but [they are] very busy.”

The CQC report said: “Some aspects of the service were not always safe and there was limited assurance about safety. There is an increased risk that people could be harmed.

“Management and leadership was inconsistent. Leaders and the culture they created did not always support the delivery of high-quality, person-centered care”

The CQC reported that the registered manager had resigned and plans were in place to recruit a new one.

Kingswood Court is owned by Barchester Hellens Ltd, a London-based business. A spokesperson said: “The home was rated as good in three categories, recognising that Kingswood Court care home effectively provides a caring environment with a responsive team.

“However, we take the findings of the CQC very seriously and we recognise that changes need to be made in the areas that require improvement, as identified in the report, and we are taking immediate steps to ensure these are addressed and will be implementing a full action plan.

“The inspection took place in early April and significant progress has been made since to positive, permanent changes for the improvement of the service. This includes working with external partners to build relationships, making positive changes to the home’s environment, improving our internal quality review score and putting a strong focus on documentation.

“We were glad to see that the report reflects improvements made regarding staffing, with all roles filled, and that staff effectively manage both medication and infection control safely. Delivering high-quality care is of the utmost importance to us.”