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Care company deemed “not safe” by quality inspectors

LOCAL care provider MiHomecare was shamed in a recent Care Quality Commission (CQC)report,  in which only one of five inspection categories was of an acceptable standard.

The Melksham-based branch of the company, which provides personal at-home care for approximately 200 vulnerable people, was deemed to not be safe, effective, responsive, or well-led.

MiHomecare provides services for people with a range of conditions including dementia, disabilities, and terminal illnesses. In its recent safety examination the company was given the lowest rating – ‘Inadequate’.

The report, published in March this year said, “There were not enough staff to meet people’s needs and to cover for the staff sickness the agency was experiencing. Due to this, people were not assured consistency with their care and were not always supported by staff who knew them well.

“People told us there were occasions when staff did not arrive to provide their support. The electronic call monitoring system in place was not available to all staff and due to this, there was the risk that missed calls would not be identified. This placed people at risk of not receiving a service.

“The medicine administration records did not ensure people were given their medicines safely.”

In the effectiveness, responsiveness, and leadership categories the company received ‘Requires Improvement’.

A number of concerns were raised in the report: one described patients’ “anxiety and concern” at MiHomecare being unclear about when they would visit; another observed that staff would sometimes visit patients with no prior knowledge of their condition, placing both parties at risk.

The firm did, however, receive a ‘Good’ rating in the caring category.

The report said, “Staff cared about the people they supported and were committed to providing a good service. Staff involved people in their care and were clear about their responsibility of promoting people’s rights.”

MiHomecare is a national care provider with branches in nearly 20 counties across England. They did not respond to efforts by Melksham News to contact them.

Wiltshire Council has confirmed that they will be monitoring the company.

In a letter to a local councillor, corporate director Maggie Rae said, “Wiltshire Council is working closely with CQC to support MiHome Care to make the necessary improvements. We will be doing daily/weekly contact and monitoring risks identified by our staff and residents.”

The full inspection report can be read at www.cqc.org.uk