Norwich health service ‘requires improvement’ following damning report into north Norfolk care

Helping hands. Dementia care worker giving a patient a manicure at the Norfolk & Norwich university

Helping hands. Dementia care worker giving a patient a manicure at the Norfolk & Norwich university hospital. Photo: Bill Smith - Credit: Archant

A service providing care to people in Norfolk living with dementia and other long-term health conditions has received a damming report from inspectors.

Better Healthcare Services in Norwich was found not to be consistently safe, well-led or effective following a visit from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

The organisation, which looks after 95 people in their own homes in north Norfolk, was told it 'required improvement' by inspectors.

But the company's managing director Marc Diamond today said the issues raised in the report were already being addressed.

When inspectors visited the service on February 17, they found:

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•The service failed to deploy enough staff to meet people's care and support needs;

•Medicines administration records were incomplete and did not indicate what medicines people had received and when;

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•People's human rights were compromised as the service failed to work within the Mental Capacity Act 2005;

•People did not always feel listened to by the service;

•People did not receive continuity of care as they received support from a number of different staff, some of whom did not have knowledge of their needs.

The company was given a block contract by Norfolk County Council in November 2015 to deliver services across north Norfolk.

But Mr Diamond said shorty after it received the contract it lost 12 members of staff - putting a stretch on the service.

He said the company now employs 52 carers, with 11 shadowing and a further 19 in the 'pipeline'.

He added: 'Prior to the CQC inspection we were already in heavy meetings with Norfolk County Council and an action plan was put together before they came in.

'In terms of recruitment we are now in a healthy position. If they came in today we are confident we would get a 'good' [rating].'

The CQC report, published on Wednesday, said the service required improvements to safety, effectiveness, caring and leadership.

In regard to how responsive the service was, inspectors found it to be inadequate.

•You can read the full CQC report here

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