Care home downgraded by watchdog from 'good' to 'requires improvement'

Clarence House care home in Mexborough - photo by Kerrie BeddowsClarence House care home in Mexborough - photo by Kerrie Beddows
Clarence House care home in Mexborough - photo by Kerrie Beddows
A CARE home has implemented an action plan and pledged to work with the health and social care watchdog after its rating was downgraded from 'good' to 'requires improvement' following an unannounced inspection.

Care Quality Commission inspectors identified breaches in relation to infection control, risks associated with people's care, and good governance at Clarence House, which was home to 52 people at the time of the visit.The watchdog had deemed the Mexborough home as 'good' in a previous inspection in 2017.

But in its latest report, published last month (January), inspectors returning in November last year downgraded the facility to 'requires improvement' overall and in three out of five categories – safe, caring and well-led.

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The CQC did not rate the areas of effective and responsive and the previous rating of 'good' was carried over.

Clarence House care home in MexboroughClarence House care home in Mexborough
Clarence House care home in Mexborough

Inspectors touring the home on West Road found several unclean areas including a kitchenette, bathrooms, and toilets.

“Following our inspection, the registered manager took action to address these concerns,” the report said.

“However, systems around infection control need to become more effective.”

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The commission spoke to eight members of staff including the registered manager, four service users, and 14 relatives.

One relative told the CQC “cleanliness is not good”, while another said “the rooms are pleasant, clean and welcoming.”

The watchdog similarly received “mixed views” from relatives in other areas with one saying: "I think there is a good culture there, it feels like a community”, while others said communication was “often poor” and relatives did not feel involved in the service

Inspectors observed staff closing doors and curtains “to preserve people's dignity” and said employees were “klnd and caring but often task-focused” meaning people “did not always receive person-centre care.” The CQC also noted that staff had received training in safeguarding and knew what action to take if they suspected abuse, the provider had a safe recruitment process in place and there were enough employees available to support people.

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Accidents and incidents were recorded, and action was taken to reduce future risks.The CQC requested an action plan from Clarence House and said: “We will work alongside the provider and local authority to monitor progress.”

A spokesperson for Crown Care Group which operates the home said: “Following the recent CQC rating of 'requires improvement,' Clarence House is committed to transparently addressing the findings and prioritising resident well-being.

“We appreciate the CQC's evaluation, and our immediate action plan includes completing the final part of our redecoration and refurbishment programme – now in the final stages – and to improve our ways of gathering feedback that is current and honest from all our residents, their families and loved ones, and all who visit Clarence House.

“Our residents remain our top priority, and we are dedicated to learning, growing, and exceeding all the latest care standards as their new CQC inspection process is rolled out throughout this year.

“Open dialogue is encouraged with all stakeholders, and regular updates on our progress will be provided.

“Clarence House remains devoted to compassionate, person-centred care.”

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