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Admissions to a care home for the vulnerable elderly have been suspended after a health watchdog uncovered “serious failings” at the complex.

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Barleycroft Care Home, in Springfield Gardens, Romford, is now subject to enforcement action by Care Quality Commission (CQC) following an unannounced visit by inspectors in October.

Three national standards of quality and safety were not being met by the home, today’s CQC report said, including:

• Care and welfare of people who use services;

• Management of medicines;

• Assessment and monitoring the quality of service provision.

The home provides nursing care for people aged 65 and over, including those with dementia, physical disabilities, and disease.

People were not getting the care they needed in a “timely and safe manner”, the report said of the home which is responsible for up to 80 people.

The systems for the administration of medicines were “not robust”, it said, and did “not support people to receive their prescribed medication safely”.

The quality monitoring system from provider, Festival Care Homes Limited, was not effective, it added.

However, inspectors said “most people” they spoke with were “positive” about the way in which the staff supported and cared for them.

Both workers and residents agreed the home was understaffed.

CQC placed a condition on the registration of the home preventing new admissions until “the problems had been fixed”.

Matthew Trainer, regional director for CQC in London, said: “We’ve taken action against Festival Care Homes Limited to protect people living in Barleycroft Care Home by stopping any potential increase in numbers in the home while the provider fixes the problems we identified.

“We’ll return unannounced to the home in due course to check whether the provider has made the required changes. If we find they haven’t been made, we will take further action to protect people living there.”

Comment from Festival Care Homes has been sought.

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