Chilterns Manor, a residential care home in Bourne End, has been rated ‘inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) for a second time.

The service provides accommodation and personal care for up to 22 people. It offers support for older people, including those living with dementia.

The CQC conducted a follow up inspection at Chilterns Manor in February after rating the provider ‘inadequate’ in August 2022.

Inspectors were looking for improvements that Chilterns Manor had been told to make last year. However, its overall rating remains ‘inadequate’.

What inspectors found

  • Inspectors saw that staff did not always follow safe procedures when they helped people to move.
  • While recruitment checks had been carried out for all staff, inspectors said that some staff had no experience of working in adult social care and did not speak good English. It was not clear how they had been appointed to their roles, and their application forms and references did not provide assurance that they were suited to their jobs.
  • Some staff spoke their first languages in front of care home residents, instead of English.
  • People were not engaged in decisions about their care. The culture of the home was not person-centred, inclusive or empowering.

Five key questions

The CQC assesses five key questions to decide whether a service is working well. They are:

  • Is it safe?
  • Is it effective?
  • Is it caring?
  • Is it responsive?
  • Is it well led?

While Chilterns Manor was rated ‘good’ for caring and responsiveness, it was rated ‘requires improvement’ for effectiveness.

Its rating against the key questions ‘Is it safe?’ and ‘Is it well led?’ remain ‘inadequate’. The home will therefore remain in special measures. This means the CQC will continue to closely monitor Chilterns Manor, and it will be inspected again to find out whether the necessary improvements have been made.

‘Poor leadership arrangements’

Amy Jupp, CQC Deputy Director of Operations in the South East of England, said:

Poor leadership arrangements undermined the care provided to people at Chilterns Manor. We found people weren’t supported to have as much choice as possible about their care, or the activities they wanted to do.

We observed several interactions between people and staff at mealtimes and when they were serving drinks. Some staff stood over people when they assisted them, rather than sitting beside them or bending down at the same level.

There were also a number of safety risks. For example, portable electric heaters were placed in people’s bedrooms. We went into one room where the person had dementia and may not have fully understood the dangers this posed when their heater was on.

We asked staff to stop using these due to the risk of injury and alerted the provider to the risk of harm. We won’t hesitate to use our enforcement powers if we’re not assured people are safe – or if improvements aren’t made.

The CQC’s full report on Chilterns Manor can be read on its website.

Have your say on this service

Don’t forget, if you have experience of care from Chilterns Manor, you can rate and review it right here on our website.

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Published on 30 May, 2023

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