An Ashton-based home care service provider for people with learning difficulties has been heavily criticised in its latest inspection.
Tameside Link has been given a rating of ‘inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after announced inspections were conducted on September 29 and October 10.
Major faults highlighted include the lack of training of staff and the incorrect usage of medicine for their clients.
The report stated: “We found the administration of people’s medicines to be unsafe. Staff had not received up to date training in medicines administration or had been assessed as being competent to give people their medicines.
“We found gaps in people’s medicines administration records and could not be reassured people had been given their medicines as and when they were prescribed or needed them.”
It also became clear that staff had not received full inductions when they started working, and that reviews to monitor their performance and progress were not frequent enough.
Another area that was identified in the report was that the provider had no risk assessments in place and that staff had no guidelines on how to provide safe care.
It was also apparent that there were no care plans available for patients and records that were on file were outdated.
This point was consolidated in the report which mentioned: “professionals connected with the service raised concerns with us about care planning for people.”
The lack of organisation in the firm was also present in the fact that safeguarding incidents had not been sent to the CQC which is an obligatory requirement.
There were some positive comments made by people receiving care who remarked how they felt staff were ‘nice’, ‘kind’ and ‘caring’ to them, but this aspect of the service was let down at times too.
Inspectors mentioned one occasion in which “we observed one staff member on the phone talking loudly about a person and another staff member spoke to us about the person in front of them without including them. We found this showed a lack of respect.”
Tameside Link has been contacted about the inspection but has declined to comment.
Due to the poor score of the inspection which was published on December 19, the care service has been placed into ‘special measures’ meaning it must make the suggested improvements or they will risk further action taken in the next six months.
At the time of the inspection, Tameside Link supported 13 people in their own flats and homes including three people who live in a block of flats and two people who share a house together.
Image courtesy of Sam Caplat, with thanks