Burnham care home ruled 'inadequate' by Care Quality Commission

Shay Bottomley


A care home in Burnham has maintained its ‘inadequate’ rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after an unannounced follow-up inspection in May.

In the report, published on August 3, the CQC found that vulnerable residents at Nicholas House were placed at ‘significant risk of harm’ due to ‘a lack of knowledge and understanding of how to assess, monitor and manage risks’.

Records showed that people who had been identified at risk of falls continued to sustain injuries, some of which resulted in fractures, as actions taken by management and staff ‘were not in line with the provider’s prevention and management of falls policy’.

The CQC also observed that staff did not always wear PPE in line with Government guidelines.

One relative commented that they did not know how their mother falls so often, adding that they received a phone call after each incident but believed that nightly observations were required. Another said that whilst they felt their family member was safe at Nicholas House, they had had several falls which had ‘rendered her quite disabled’.

The two-day follow-up inspection beginning on May 18 earlier this year took place after a previous visit to the service found ‘breaches of legal requirement’ leading to the

‘inadequate’ rating.

The report added that the CQC had not always been notified when incidents happened, and failed to work In accordance with the Duty of Candour which ensures transparency when incidents occur.

One resident had suffered four falls between January 6 and March 3. Although a risk assessment had identified them as at high risk of falls, the absence of recorded management plans meant that staff did not have the information required to help prevent the resident from further falls.

However it did state that people and their relatives said they felt safe from abuse and medicines were administered safely.

As a result, Nicholas House will continue to be monitored under ‘special measures’, meaning a further inspection will take place within six months to check for ‘significant improvements’.

A spokesperson for Nicholas House said: “Nicholas House was set up by Sir Nicholas Winton and our vision and values are to provide the best possible care for our residents; we have and continue to have a good rating for our care.

“The report highlighted the lack of paperwork to evidence compliance. We have therefore implemented new compliance and governance systems to provide the evidence required to meet the Care Quality Commission regulations.”

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