Carer describes Long Itchington care home rated inadequate as 'insidious'

Greenways Care Home
Greenways Care Home

A carer at Greenways Care Home in Long Itchington has described it as ‘insidious’ after a female patient died of renal failure there.

The carer at Greenways Care Home in Marton Road, who wished to remain anonymous, contacted the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after trying in vain to get a GP to see the woman.

She said: “We had requested a GP to be called to her. She was in considerable pain and had been for weeks.

“The requests were just ignored (by the home’s management) and that lady later died of renal failure.

“The lady’s death probably would have happened anyway, but the inspector said he could see the requests for a GP had been ignored because they did not tally with the paperwork.”

This incident was the final straw that led her to contact the CQC after seeing other examples of bad practice in her time working at the home, such as leaving loose medication on the floor in various rooms and not reporting injuries from things like falls correctly.

She said: “I’ve never worked in such an insidious environment.

“I believe that until they get a qualified, trained manager in situ, it will continue to go downhill.”

The CQC inspector’s findings largely confirmed what the carer had seen, giving a rating of inadequate, with the home being placed in special measures.

The report published in August,after a surprise inspection over three days in June and July, found the home was ‘unsafe’ and ‘not well-led’.

On the first and second day of the inspection, the lift was out of order - seven residents were staying on the top floor at the time.

When inspectors asked staff how residents with mobility problems were being helped to come downstairs, they were told those residents were not able to leave their room, and no provision had been made to support them in this way.

Prior to the inspection the inspector received information that suggested people were being woken up and dressed in a way which was not in line with their preferred choices.

Inspectors arrived at 6am on the first day of the inspection and found three people out of bed, dressed and sat in the lounge.

When asked why, a member of staff said it was to assist day staff.

Another member of staff told the inspectors: "We are forced to do this; we have to get three people up to help the day shift. It makes me feel awful."

When inspectors informed the service provider they said they were 'unaware' and 'appalled'.

Other problems found by inspectors included a lockable trolley of medicines being left open, meaning residents could have accessed medication that was not meant for them, and staff apparently leaving medicine in patients’ rooms so they could take it on their own.

Inspectors also found a significant amount of a controlled drug was unaccounted for as the stock level held did not match the stock count in the controlled medicines register - the provider was unable to account for this discrepancy.

The management of the home was also criticised by inspectors.

They found ‘a lack of proactive management and leadership’ at Greenways from registered manager Carole Webb, and that systems to monitor safety checks ‘were not in place’.

And although Carole Webb said the home’s owner Julie Twitchell visited the home weekly to make audits of the environment, there were no records of the audits for inspectors to look at.

Following the report, the carer said she just wanted the residents to be safe in the home without having to move.

A previous CQC report, published on March 14 2017, also rated the home inadequate.

Greenways has been contacted for a response to the report but has not supplied one at the time of publishing.

The full report can be accessed here.