CQC Outstanding Home Care celebrated by the UKHCA
In recognition of being awarded an Outstanding CQC rating, Robin Home Care has been invited to a reception hosted by the UK Home Care Association (UKHCA). This prestigious event will be held at the House of Commons Members’ Dining Room, once Parliament is back in session after the general election.
The UKHCA is emphasising that Robin Home Care’s Outstanding rating not only recognises their dedication, and that of their team, but also helps to raise the profile and respect for homecare more widely in England.
Influential MPs, as well as MPs from constituencies with a UKHCA member rated Outstanding will be present, so that they can hear first-hand how our services are enabling people to live independently and well at home.
What does the Care Quality Commission look for when inspecting home care services?
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent, government-sanctioned but independent regulator of health and social care in England. The CQC monitor, inspect and regulate services in the care sector. Their stated purpose is to make sure that health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care. They also encourage care services to improve their performance by giving advice and guidance.
When inspecting care services, the Care Quality Commission asks these five key questions, which represent the fundamental standards of quality:
- Is this service safe?
- Is this service effective?
- Is this service caring?
- Is this service responsive to people’s needs?
- Is this service well-led?
The CQC then rates services on a four-point scale: ‘Outstanding’, ‘Good’, ‘Requires improvement’, ‘Inadequate’. These ratings help people looking for care services make informed choices around the care they need.
What do the CQC ratings mean?
As can be seen from the scale, the difference between good and outstanding CQC ratings is significant. A CQC Outstanding Home Care rating indicates that the service is performing exceptionally well which gives members of the public peace of mind regarding the quality and safety of the service. The CQC emphasises that “we look at various areas, including safety and we publish what we find.” CQC recommends that you look for home care agencies where the staff involve people who use services, their families and carers, and treat individuals with compassion, kindness, dignity and respect.
The staff looking after you need to be skilled, kind and supportive. They should also be capable and confident in dealing with your particular needs and you should always feel that their support is helping you to live the life you want to.
STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO CHOOSING A CARE AGENCY
1. Fully involve the person who will be receiving the care
It is important that the person who will be receiving care is included in the process of deciding what care is required and which care agency will be delivering it. The aim is that everyone involved in the process is comfortable with the decisions being made.
2. Decide what type of care is required and how much care will be needed
Think about your budget but also bear in mind the following questions
- What Services would you need? E.g. Personal care & hygiene; Companionship; Domestic help at home; Elderly home care; Live-in care; Dementia care; End-of-Life care; Learning Disabilities care; Specialist care; or Physical Disabilities care
- At what times in the day do you want visits?
- How long would the visits last?
- What specific activities do you want help with?
3. Make a short-list of home care providers in your area
There are many different sources of information and directories available online such as homecare.co.uk, ukhca and CQC. You can also ask your local authority social care team or GP. Initial information that should be checked include: –
- Is the company registered with CQC (this is a legal requirement for personal care)
- Check their CQC ratings and published inspection reports. Their performance ratings will give you a good indication of the quality of the service. It is always worthwhile considering any company with a CQC Outstanding Home Care rating.
- Review their websites and ask for a brochure and their costs
- Look for client reviews on sites such as homecare.co.uk, facebook and Google
4. Arrange a meeting at your home with the companies on your final short-list.
Meeting the people who will be responsible for the care you receive is important. It allows you to gauge their approach to care and allows you to have an open discussion about how they operate. The following list contains suggestions for a meeting:
- Try and meet with senior members of the Care Management Team. This is a sector which relies heavily on caring people so it is important you meet the management and assess their capabilities
- Check how they will assess your specific needs and how they would put together a care and support plan tailored for you.
- Ask how they recruit and train their carers and how they ensure a safe service is delivered.
- Ask how carers are matched to clients and whether or not you would get a chance to meet them before the service starts
- How would the agency deal with your regular carer being ill or going on holiday?
- How many carers would be allocated to look after you?
- What would happen if you wanted to change a carer?
- Establish what ongoing training is organised for the carers
- Ask if the agency will liaise with other healthcare professionals such as GPs, District nurses, Occupational Therapists etc.
- What happens if there is a medical emergency
- How would a carer handle money for shopping?
- Does the agency have insurance in place in case of damage to your belongings and property?
Above all, you must be comfortable that the agency you choose will be compassionate and caring and will be there to support you through any changing circumstances.