Care home placed in special measures after it is graded as 'inadequate' by inspectors

Highfield House Residential Home in Hawell. Image copyright Google Maps.
Highfield House Residential Home in Hawell. Image copyright Google Maps.

Services at a care home are under review after a series of concerns were raised about how it is run.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has graded Highfield House Residential Home in Sycamore Terrace in Haswell as "inadequate."

Its inspectors found the accommodation, which takes up to 25 people, was rated at that level for the safety, effectiveness, its ability to respond and its leadership, with its care in need of improvement.

It has been placed in special measures, which means it will be kept under review and if it does not improve, its registration of service could be cancelled.

The report states: "We found no evidence that a systematic approach to resolve previously identified regulatory requirements was now in place.
"The registered providers did not ensure that effective action had taken place following a CQC inspection in January 2016 and people using the service were found to be at risk, despite the home being placed in 'Special Measures' and enforcement actions taking place.

"At this inspection inspection we found significant improvements had not been made to meet these requirements and Highfield House Residential Home was inadequate in four of the five areas we inspected.

"The home was not well run, operational procedures were disorganised and oversight by the register providers was ineffective.

"The registered providers did not act in a timely fashion to achieve compliance, meet service users' needs and adequately protect them from receiving poor care."

Issues raised included the water system being too hot, concerns over medication administration, food preparation which did not meet safe standards, arrangements for infection control which were not robust, staff being exposed to unnecessary risk involving chemical products and a failure to meet people's dietary requirements.

It also found that residents were at risk of abuse because staff training in safeguarding was not up to date. They were also not trained in medicines management.

The report adds: "The staff took an interest in people and their relatives to provide individual personal care.
"However people were not always treated with dignity, their privacy was not always protected and the registered provider did not show respect for peoples personal possessions."

The full report can be read here.

No one from the home was available for comment.