We all want to be safe and healthy in our old age, while health may not always be with us, safety should be.
For people moving into nursing homes and care homes, it is important that they feel reassured that as a tenant they will be well looked after, receive any treatment they require and maintain a good quality of life.
The Care Quality Commission - CQC is an independent regulator of health and social care in England. They not only inspect GPs offices, dental services, opticians and hospitals but also carry out inspections in care homes. Each property is provided with a rating for the public to see so they are aware of the care available and what areas require improvement.
Every provider needs to be registered and when necessary the CQC will investigate complaints.
Unfortunately I have seen in my casework that when some homes have received a poor review, they set up again at the same premises under a new name, leaving their poor rating behind. I have been liaising with the CQC over this issue and I am pleased to confirm that the team are now working on a system to prevent this from occurring.
The changes should allow for new providers to re-register if they are genuinely new whilst picking up on companies which are simply re-naming to escape their poor rating. I feel this is great news as it not only allows new businesses to take over poorly rated homes to turn them around but ensures that those providers who are not performing well, cannot hide and will be held to account.
The system is not quite perfect yet, but I will continue to work with the CQC where I can to help ensure that high quality care is provided in all of the health centres and homes throughout my constituency.
I know many local homes do a fantastic job of supporting residents in my local area with hard working, dedicated and caring staff who provide dignity, privacy and safety in their older years and this change will help to ensure those with high ratings continue to enjoy good custom, whilst those without are pressed to improve or close.
If you have concerns about a care home, are thinking about moving into a home and want more information or would like to find out your options for care please call Staffordshire County Council on 0300 111 8000