Two of the biggest concerns when choosing a care home are safety and quality. A quality care home is likely to be a safe one, and a safe home will provide high quality care.
What is a safe, quality care home?
We believe a care home that provides safe, quality care is one with compassionate and well-trained staff, that treat people as individuals, and will strive to meet the care needs of its residents, even if they change.
One of our core beliefs is that care is something we do with and for people, not "to" them. We properly assess the needs of each person before they come to stay, and continue to assess their needs on a regular basis so we can always provide the most appropriate care.
There are a number of ways we measure the quality of care provided in our homes, both internally and externally.
Our internal measures
Our aim is to achieve the following standards in all our care homes:
- Maintain people's privacy, dignity and independence
- Involve people in decisions about their care, treatment and support
- Help residents understand their care, including providing the right information about it
- To be respectful and considerate to everyone at all times
- Encourage residents to care for themselves where possible, so they maintain their independence for as long as possible
- Help people decide how they want to live their life
- Encourage residents and their families to be involved in how the home is run
- Make sure we know people's wishes in terms of their care, review them regularly, then act on them if needed
We also have an internal quality team who look at aspects of health and safety, training, standards and other aspects of day-to-day care.
The most important measure of any home is feedback from residents and their families. That's why we regularly ask people to fill in questionnaires and surveys to let us know if the home is meeting their expectations, and to make suggestions on how we could improve.
There are regulatory bodies in the UK that conduct inspections and give care homes quality ratings. In England, our homes are inspected by the Care Quality Commission, in Scotland by the Care Inspectorate, in Wales by the Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales, and in Northern Ireland by the Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority.
You'll find links to the latest regulators' reports on individual care home pages. Or you can contact the regulators:
England: Care Quality Commission
Scotland: Scottish Care Inspectorate
Northern Ireland: Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA)
Isle of Man: Isle of Man Inspection Unit
Jersey: States of Jersey
Raising a concern
We know how important it is for residents and their families to be happy with their care, but sometimes you may want to raise a concern or make a complaint. We welcome the chance to discuss any comments or concerns you may have, and encourage you to first contact the manager at the care home involved.
If that's not appropriate, or you'd like to talk to someone else, you can speak to the regional manager whose contact details are kept at the home. You can also contact our head office for their details.
We take all worries, concerns and complaints extremely seriously and will ensure they are handled sensitively. We aim to respond to you quickly, and will confirm within two working days that we have received your concern. We then aim to reply with a full response within 20 working days. If, for any reason, the process will take longer, we will let you know as soon as possible.
"I feel at home when I visit my mother and feel confident that she is being well looked after, I wouldn't want her to be anywhere else."