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Friday, 25 July 2014

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Concerns spark new inspection at Carlisle care home

Fresh concerns prompted an unannounced inspection of a care home – just weeks after it was found not to be meeting a key standard.

Blackwell Vale photo
Blackwell Vale

Issues with Blackwell Vale, in Durdar Road, Carlisle, were first flagged up earlier this year under an ‘early warning system’.

The concerns were mentioned at the June meeting of the governing body of the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), when members were told the issues revolved around staffing levels, quality of care and training records. They stemmed from an anonymous complaint.

At the time a spokesman for the Four Seasons Group, which runs the home, said it was surprised as Blackwell Vale had received a positive review by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) at the beginning of the year.

Since those concerns were raised, the watchdog has sent inspectors out again and ruled that the home was not protecting its residents “from the risks of unsafe or inappropriate care and treatment because records were not appropriately maintained”.

The CQC report said its inspectors found that records were not up-to-date and did not reflect what was actually going on in the home.

“The systems that were in place for recording information about people’s care were not consistent,” it continued.

“Overall, this meant that individual care records did not provide information that could accurately monitor people’s needs.

“The care given could not be proven to be given and therefore people using the service were at risk from unsafe or inappropriate care and treatment.”

This visit was carried out in July, but not made public until the beginning of September.

However, the CQC have since confirmed that it has returned once more to Blackwell Vale.

A statement on the home’s page on the watchdog’s website says: “We have received information that has led us to carry out an inspection of Blackwell Vale Care Home. We will publish a report when our check is complete.”

That information is understood to have been an anonymous complaint that people’ needs were not being met. Inspectors are thought to have found they were.

Blackwell Vale management say inspectors have found residents happy with the care and support they receive – and that it is meeting the standards demanded, except for aspects of record keeping.

A spokesman said: “We are sorry that the inspectors found that there is a need to improve aspects of record keeping but judged this as a minor concern – the lowest level.

“They are able to describe impacts as minor, moderate or major.

“We accept the recommendations of the inspectors and have put in place an action plan including tightening procedures for record keeping, together with refresher training for staff in record keeping.”

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