Home_First_Logo_image.jpgA service which supports people to be discharged from hospital and receive care in their own homes has been recognised as being caring, effective and responsive.

Home First – Stoke is registered to provide personal care for people in their own home who are clinically safe for discharge and do not require an acute hospital bed. However, they may still require care services which are provided in the short term in their own home (where appropriate) or another community setting. Assessment for longer-term care and support needs is then undertaken in the most appropriate setting and at the right time for the person.

The service was inspected by the Care Quality Commission between 30 October and 6 November when 111 people were receiving personal care from the team.

Inspectors noted that “people were safe as staff members had been trained and understood how to support people in a way that protected them from danger, harm and abuse …People had positive relationships with the staff members who supported them. People's care and support needs and preferences were known by staff who assisted them in a way which was personal to them. People were involved in decisions about their care and had information they needed in a way they understood”.

The inspectors also reported that all those receiving care, and the family members who they spoke with “were complementary about the staff supporting them and found that they were knowledgeable and skilled to support them with their needs …. One person said, ’The carers are superb.’ One relative told us, ‘They (staff) are a Godsend.’”

The assessment gave Good ratings for Effective, Caring and Responsive categories. The inspectors noted two key areas for improvement; timeliness and consistency of staff visiting and not having a registered manager in place. These issues led to an overall rating of Requires Improvement.
Jennie Collier, Managing Director for Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Home First – Stoke is one of eight Home First services we provide and I am very proud of the staff who were involved in this first inspection.

“The service received a good rating in the majority of areas reviewed; caring, effective and responsive.

“The report states that “Everyone we spoke with told us they felt safe and protected when receiving care and support.” This is a significant achievement for such a busy service.

“Two key areas for improvement were identified; timeliness and consistency of staff visiting and not having a registered manager in place.

“We currently provide specific times for patients with a specific health need such as medication that is prescribed at a specific time or palliative care patients.

“All other patients are given a four hour time slot. We appreciate that this is not convenient for everyone and we had already identified this through our own feedback mechanisms. We have introduced daily rotas and reviewed the areas in which people work to improve this. We also use care and support plans to ensure that the support received is consistent even if the staff member is different. And these were recognised in the report as being in line with best practice.

“We didn’t have a registered manager in place at the time of the inspection but had submitted the required notifications. The interim service manager understood the requirements of the CQC and was meeting them. Staff spoke highly of the management team and described them as approachable. Following the CQC inspection, we introduced a senior coordinator post to meet the registration requirements.”

Link to CQC report https://www.cqc.org.uk/location/RREU6