Jedburgh care home fails to raise standards

Knowesouth Care Centre between Jedburgh and Hawick.
Knowesouth Care Centre between Jedburgh and Hawick.
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A Jedburgh care home has suspended admissions, after a damning Care Inspectorate report.

A surprise visit by the watchdog Care Inspectorate (CI) on September 5 gave Jedburgh’s Knowesouth Care Centre exactly the same poor grades as its last inspection on May 31.

The home, caring for up to 50 residents, scored the lowest possible ‘Unsatisfactory’ in Quality of Care and Support, and ‘Weak’ in the three other areas, Quality of Environment, Staffing, and Management & Leadership.

Knowesouth, owned and managed by Wolverhampton-based St Philips Care, had “Not Met” nine out of the 11 requirements imposed by the Care Inspectorate after its May inspection, and a 10th was “Met – Outwith Timescales”.

Most damning, the CI found “insufficient numbers/skills of staff working in the service to cover care and support duties,” and “malodours in the home”.

The home failed to meet the CI’s two recommendations, which are also being carried forward.

While acknowledging “some progress”, in particular in “on-going staff recruitment”, “wound care”, and “plans to replace the radiators”, the CI summarised: “The progress did not evidence positive outcomes for patients.”

However, the report did praise “helpful”, “caring and respectful” staff, “spacious, personalised rooms”, and residents “enjoyed the food” it said. An interviewee was quoted as saying “their relative was well-cared for”.

Short timescales for eight more legally enforceable requirements have been imposed, to ensure “sufficient staff numbers”, “the nutritional needs of patients”, “systems for the management and prevention of falls”, “the home is free of malodours” and “to minimise the risk of pressure ulcer development,”

St Philips Care, the report concluded, had “agreed to placing an embargo on admissons to the service until improvements are seen.”

St Philips Care’s regional manager in Scotland responded: “We have employed an experienced care management consultant, Jenny Wishart Associates, who will oversee the daily running of the service.

“This is to ensure that the home has a focused approach to the improvements required.

“The opinion of the CI was there was not enough staff on duty, however the home is currently staffed for an occupancy of 45 residents when there are only 33 residents at this time.

“Home management carry out monthly audits to analyse falls and nutrition, and all other aspects of service delivery, all of which generate detailed action plans for follow-up improvements and timescales.

“Relatives, residents and staff have been kept up to date with all changes within the home and the ongoing plans and requirements.”