Halifax care home owners hit back over Worst Care award

Pellon Lane Care Home, Pellon, Halifax
Pellon Lane Care Home, Pellon, Halifax

The owners of a Halifax care home have defended their record after it was named as a runner-up in the Worst Care awards.

Pellon Care Centre was named runner-up in the Worst Care in a Corporate Home 2017 by Older Living Matters (OLM), a website that monitors care for old people.

But the home’s owners, Four Seasons Health Care, say that recent improvements to Pellon Care Centre mean no aspect of the home is now rated as inadequate.

One of the judges from OLM said that the home was issued with a warning notice in 2016, little had improved by the time of the latest report.

But a spokesman for Four Seasons said: “The Care Quality Commission has acknowledged that significant improvements have been made at Pellon Care Centre under its new home manager and following an inspection in December no aspect of the home is rated as inadequate. It is rated as good for being caring and for providing effective care.

“The inspectors saw survey results that showed 97.87 per cent of residents thought the home was a happy place to live and 100 per cent said they felt safe and that they were treated with respect as individuals and listened to.

“There were enough staff, they were trained and supported to enable them to meet people’s needs.

“People living in the home and relatives praised the staff who they described as “lovely, kind and caring,” which was what the inspectors said they observed during the inspection. They reported that staff clearly knew people well and took every opportunity to engage with them.

“One resident said, “They’re lovely and they love me” and another person said, “I’m as happy as can be.” The inspectors said they saw another person’s face lit up when a staff member approached, the person flung their arms round the staff member and gave them a kiss

“Relatives were equally positive and comments included; “Very compassionate staff”; “Treated like individuals” and “What I’ve seen you can’t fault them.”

“One relative told inspectors how happy their family member had been since they came into the home and how they called it their ‘forever home’. Another said their family member sometimes had ‘off days’ but staff were very good at spotting this. They said, “I came in one day and staff were sat with (family member) who was upset, quietly comforting them. They didn’t know I was coming in and I thought that was lovely to see they were so caring.”

“People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their live. They were involved in planning their care. Care plans were detailed and contained information on people’s health and care needs, their history, interests, preferences and dislikes.

“Risks to people were generally well managed; staff understood safeguarding procedures and medicines were well managed. The home was clean and with effective infection controls. There were effective quality audit systems.

“People told the inspectors how much they enjoyed the food. The inspectors saw people were offered a choice of meals that looked appetising and received generous portions. The care team and chef were aware of any special dietary requirements and these were catered for.

“Activity staff organised a range of activities and events both in the home and local community.

“Relatives and staff told the inspectors they would have no hesitation in recommending the home. One relative said, “I’d definitely recommend it, without a doubt. (My family member) loves them all here. The biggest thing is the care, it’s just so good.” A staff member said, “I am proud to work here and proud when people say they like it here. I can see people get good care.”

“The overall CQC rating for the home is “requires improvement”. It would be unusual to go from an inadequate rating to good, as inspectors usually want to see good practice maintained over time. We are working to further improve the home and consult regularly with residents, relatives and the care team about this.

“For a while Pellon Care Centre slipped well below the standards that we expect all of our homes to provide, but it has since made huge improvements, so it is regrettable that Older Living Matters did not give us an opportunity to respond before including it in their worst care rankings as their information does not correspond to the comments of included in the most recent CQC inspection report.

“We will be inviting Older Living Matters to come to the home to see for themselves and to meet the manager, care team, residents and relatives.”