Comhairle nan Eilean Siar has been directed by the Care Inspectorate (CI) to ensure there is sufficient staff working at all times in Stornoway’s Dun Eisdean Care Home ‘to meet the complex health, welfare, safety and social needs of people living in the home’.
The requirement comes following an unannounced inspection of the care home in August 2019, and CI has also required the Comhairle to ensure that ‘effective and robust’ quality assurance is put in place for the home.
The Comhairle has until January 7th to comply with CI’s directions.
The Care Inspectorate found that the overall quality of care offered in the home and the care setting were ‘good’ with ‘important strengths’, and residents and their families had commented to inspectors that the staff provide “excellent care in a warm, caring environment”.
But CI has required that staffing levels take into account the support needs of people living with dementia, the availability of staff supervision in communal areas and issues arising from the layout of the building.
In addition, the Comhairle must consider how staff would be ‘best deployed’ to reduce risks to individuals and to ‘anticipate care needs’, and must provide ‘regular social, and meaningful activity opportunities for individuals’.
In terms of the quality assurance requirements, CI stated in its report that the Comhairle must ensure ‘effective oversight and monitoring of all aspects of the service’, the monitoring of compliance with required health and safety regualtions, and must ensure areas for improvement ‘are identified, appropriately recorded and followed-up with outcomes and improvements clearly identified’.
The report also stated that the Comhairle must ensure that the views of people using the service or their representatives ‘are sought on a regular basis and used to plan and make improvements to the service’.
In a statement issued in response to CI’s findings, the Comhairle stated that the recent inspection of Dun Eisdean ‘highlighted a number of qualities about our service provision, including a warm, caring environment, good food and a high standard of cleanliness’, which, the statement concluded, ‘is testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff, who go the extra mile to ensure our residents have a positive experience’.
The Comhairle’s acknowledged in its statement that ‘there are areas for us to work on and in particular increasing our level of staffing, which will help to meet individual social needs’.
‘This is a matter’, the Comhairle’s statement continued, that ‘ we have been actively addressing, and the Health and Social Care Partnership committed an additional £139,000 to Dun Eisdean in 2019/20 to build capacity in this area. ‘This will allow us to expand the care team and recruit an Activity Coordinator post, which will enhance the social lives of the residents and enable the wider team to focus on care and support needs.
‘More generally’, the statement concluded, ‘the Dun Eisdean management team and staff are working with our Service Improvement Officers to develop quality assurance in order to drive improvement.’
CI’s report sites that Dun Eisdean Care Home is registered to provide care for up to 38 older people.