What can your local care home's CQC rating tell you?
PUBLISHED: 15:12 23 January 2020 | UPDATED: 15:12 23 January 2020
Only 3pc of residential homes in England have an 'Outstanding' rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) according to their annual 'State of Care' report for 2018 and 2019.
To discover that your local elderly care home is part of that figure may come as a surprise. Staff at Howard Lodge in Brentwood were 'delighted' to learn the home was rated 'Outstanding' from the CQC.
We spoke with director Sean Watson who shared his joy at hearing the news that his family run elderly care home has achieved this outstanding rating and explained why a care home's CQC rating should be one of the first things you look at.
What is the CQC and what do the ratings mean?
The CQC is an independent regulator of health and social care services in England. They ask five important questions to assess the quality of care and service an establishment provides:
- How safe are the residents?
- How effective is the service or treatment?
- How well does it meet the residents' needs?
- How dedicated are the staff to the care they're providing?
- What values and culture are the organisation promoting?
The CQC report looks at how well the business has performed and awards them a rating of 'Inadequate,' 'Requires Improvement,' 'Good' or 'Outstanding.'
"It's difficult to earn an 'Outstanding' rating in the care sector. Very few homes are rated this which is why it's such a phenomenal achievement," Sean said. "We're so proud. It's a testament to the dedication and care of our staff and management offer at Howard Lodge. Without them, none of this would be possible."
Why should you choose a home with an 'Outstanding' rating?
According to the CQC website, an establishment that's earned the 'Outstanding' rating is 'performing the service exceptionally well.'
You should investigate a care home's CQC rating when choosing the best place for your elderly relative. The better the rating, the higher quality of care your loved one will get.
How is Howard Lodge raising the bar of care standards?
"Considering the high financial pressure resting on the care section, for us to earn this achievement now, presents Howard Lodge as an example to other care homes. We're raising the bar and setting new standards in elderly care," said Sean.
"The CQC commended our efforts to open the door to our local community and involve them with the luncheon clubs and baby and toddler sessions run by the home."
The baby and toddler sessions bridge the gap between the generations. Residents of the home are given opportunities to interact with young toddlers and parents from the community in sessions where they run craft projects and activities.
"The intergenerational care sessions help boost residents' mental wellbeing. Since we started every intergenerational care session has been almost fully booked," Sean said. "It's been an enormous success."
"We also run a senior citizens lunch club every other month to encourage members of the community to come along, laugh and meet new people. They help to break the isolation and loneliness the elderly can sometimes face."
Extremely proud and striving to work harder
"We knew we had great facilities and services - that's what we strive for - but we never expected this level of recognition from the CQC. We're so proud and this award shows everyone the work we've done and will continue to do to raise the standards of elderly care in our local community of Brentwood and Essex," Sean said.
"For over 29 years we've operated in this area and we've built a good reputation here, but now this stamp of approval from the CQC has made it clear we're willing to go the extra mile for our clients and their families."
Howard Lodge is a family-run business dedicated to delivering a professional, high-quality service of care and improving the quality of life of its elderly clients.