Thorpe St Andrew care home given formal warning to improve standards

A failing care home has been dealt a formal warning after inspectors discovered breaches of procedure during a surprise visit last month.

Larchwood Nursing and Residential Home in Yarmouth Road, Thorpe, has until October 1 to make the improvements or face further action, said the Care Quality Commission.

An unannounced inspection from the CQC revealed owners Bondcare needed to address concerns relating to residents' care and welfare, including that:

• Monthly reviews of case files had not been carried out, in some cases for six months;

• Records were incomplete and did not contain sufficient information to cater for residents' changing needs or health risks;

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• No analysis of incidents at the home was being carried out, meaning any necessary changes were not identified;

• There was no effective system to monitor service quality;

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• Monthly infection control audits and weekly medication audits had not been taking place as scheduled.

However, inspectors also heard positive comments from residents about recent improvements.

The home, whose 48 elderly residents are a mixture of council and private residents, voluntarily stopped taking new admissions until issues raised by a February CQC report were resolved.

In May, it insisted that progress was being made in meeting all nine essential standards of care, where it had been failing.

A spokesman for the home last night welcomed the positive feedback from residents, and said it was following the action plan agreed with the CQC.

She added: 'While there are still some, mainly administrative, matters to improve, we are confident in our ongoing programme of sustainable improvement.'

Harold Bodmer, director of community services at Norfolk County Council, said Larchwood needed to improve, but recognised Bondcare's work.

He added 'The plans Larchwood has for further improvements will address the concerns raised by the CQC, and we will continue to monitor the home closely to ensure these are fulfilled as quickly as possible.'

- For more about what has happened at Larchwood this year, see the links at the top-right of this page.

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