Specialist care training – what is it?

As a carer working in the health care sector, it is crucial that every patient is afforded the correct support and care. Specialist care training courses can provide the skills and knowledge necessary to complete a range of specialist tasks, including the management of instances relating to conflict or challenging behaviour. Continue reading “Specialist care training – what is it?”

Health and Social Care Professionals – why become one?

As the population ages rapidly, more and more people will rely on health and social care professionals. The care home sector is huge in the UK but improvements in health and social care services, along with advances in technology now mean that the elderly are able to stay in their own homes longer.

In 2016 a study by skillsforcare.org revealed that 1.55 million people in the Uk work in the field.  With an average age of 43, it is an industry that attracts health and social professionals both young and old.  The role of domiciliary carers has increased dramatically over the past decade but the vast range of careers in this sector brings people of all types to work.  Roles as diverses as individual support for those with disabilities or learning difficulties to care homes managers and child care assistants. Continue reading “Health and Social Care Professionals – why become one?”

Entry to social care: the Common Induction Standards

If you are new to the health and social care sector, there are a number of areas you must be trained in before you can work unsupervised. These are known as the Common Induction Standards, and they are essential for anyone starting a career in social care.

The Common Induction Standards are designed to reflect current policy and practice within the sector, and give new staff a comprehensive and standardised induction into their new roles. They feed in perfectly to more advanced training courses such as the QCF NVQ Diploma in Health and Social Care (Level 2), offering a more consistent approach to induction and training across the whole of the sector.

So, what are the Common Induction Standards?

There are eight standards, each representing an area of knowledge that you must be well-versed in before you can really get your career started.

1 Role of the health and social care worker
2 Personal development
3 Communicate effectively
4 Equality and Inclusion
5 Principles for implementing duty of care
6 Principles of safeguarding in health and social care
7 Person-centred support
8 Health and safety in an adult social care setting

If you study these eight areas in depth, you will have taken the first important step to delivering high-quality care and support.

Dundee care home ordered by Care Commission to improve standards

Following an inspection by the Care Commission, a neurodisability facility in Dundee has been ordered to make improvements to its standards of care.

The Linlathen Neurodisability Centre in Broughty Ferry has been under scrutiny by the Care Commission for some time now, after issues relating to staffing, care training and quality of care at the home were brought to light.

A spokesperson for the Commission commented on the home, which provides care for forty-five residents. He said:

“At our most recent inspection of the service we identified a range of issues and concerns and as a result the service was awarded grades of ‘unsatisfactory’ and ‘weak’. This is unacceptable in terms of the quality of care being provided to people.

“In recent months there have been a number of staffing and care issues at the service and these continue to cause us concern. The main issues include staffing levels and skills and also understanding the support needs of people living in the home.”

The Linlathen facility’s owners now have a total of six weeks to make the required improvements to standards at the home, or it may be forced to close. A spokesperson for Four Seasons Health Care, which owns the home, has said that it is making’noticeable improvements’ in response to the Commission’s report.

Cornish nursing home failing in its duty of care

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has identified the St Theresa’s Care Centre in Callington, Cornwall, as failing in its duty of care, as elderly residents were found to be going without adequate food and drink.

This was the verdict following a surprise visit to the Cornish nursing home last August, when inspectors found that some residents did not appear to have sufficient nutrition and hydration. In addition, only three out of the 19 people monitored had been given a bath in the past month.

There appeared to be a staffing problem at the home, as some residents and carers complained to inspectors that there were not enough staff on duty. The CQC report also expressed concern over levels of care training at the home:

“The health and welfare needs of people using the service are not appropriately met.

“Staff are not available in sufficient numbers and do not have sufficient training to ensure that needs are met.”

Upon hearing of the damning CQC report, the owners of St Theresa’s Care Home expressed shock and said that a “robust action plan” had been put in place to make the necessary improvements.

Healthcare provider admits failings at new care home

The healthcare provider Housing 21 has been forced to admit that standards at its new care home in Yate are not what they should be, after several complaints were made about tenants being left unaided for days.

The facility, which is made up of 60 self-contained apartments, is designed for people aged 55 or over who need round-the-clock care. The home only opened in January but unsatisfactory staffing levels have prompted a number of complaints already. It has been reported that the facility has been without a manager for months, and residents are not getting the extra care that they need.

The daughter of an 89-year-old resident who lives in Cambrian Green Court told local newspaper the Gazette that there were no concerns over the standards of care training at the home, only the number of staff on duty. Elspeth Higgs said:

“I am not criticising the staff,”

“They are absolutely brilliant – there are just not enough of them.”

“They are absolutely run ragged. The situation is dreadful.”

The director of services for Housing 21, Les Clarke, said that the housing provider is working hard to make the required improvements and ensure that people at the facility are provided with a good standard of care.

Brockenhurst care home ordered to improve standards

A care home based in the Hampshire village of Brockenhurst in the New Forest has been ordered to improve its standards after inspectors from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) uncovered numerous problems at the premises.

After inspecting the Fernlea Care Home complex, which accommodates people who have learning difficulties, inspectors found that residents were often living in damp, dirty and even dangerous conditions. The building was found to be poorly maintained, and inspectors found mould on the walls as well as loose floorboards and nails.

There were also problems with staffing, as it was found that there were too few staff on duty to take residents outside when they wished to. In one case, a resident reported leaving the confines of the care home just eight times in July 2011. Care training did not seem to be an issue at Fernlea, however, it was simply the number of staff employed at the home.

The home’s owners have pledged to act on the report’s recommendations and improve standards at the complex, which includes giving it a major facelift. If Fernlea’s owners fail to act on their promises, the home could end up being closed down by the Care Quality Commission.

Training options for health and social care workers

There are many steps to becoming a professional in the health and social care sector, but you won’t get anywhere without the right training. Working with children, elderly people or those with illnesses or disabilities is a huge responsibility, which is why you will need to meet certain standards of training before you can take on such a role.

This is why the Common Induction Standards (CIS), developed by the Care Quality Commission and Skills for Care, exist as a set of guidelines for people entering the health and social care sector. The aim is to develop a competent, skilled and qualified workforce, in order to better meet the needs of people using health and social care services.

There are many basic care training options available to help you meet the Common Induction Standards, such as training in infection control, basic cleanliness and hygiene, nutrition awareness and medication control. However, if you wish to progress in your chosen field, you must continually develop your skills with further training.

Examples of more advanced care training courses you can take include:

• Dementia awareness training
• Palliative care awareness training
• Loss and bereavement awareness training
• Stroke awareness training

Health and social care workers urged to get flu jab

Anyone who works within the health and social care sector is being advised to take up the offer of a flu jab if it is made, in order to protect themselves and the often vulnerable people under their care.

The recommendation was made by Professor Qutub Syed, the Director of the Health Protection Agency in the North West of England, who said:

“The smooth running of NHS hospital and community services and residential care homes can be seriously disrupted by staff sickness and it is not uncommon to see outbreaks of flu in these settings.

“Health care workers have a duty of care to themselves, their colleagues and the patients and residents they look after. It is important that they should take up the offer of vaccination.”

As anyone who has undergone care training will know, infection control is a hugely important part of providing health and social care services.

Medical professionals, including the acting regional director of Public Health for NHS North West, Dr. Ann Hoskins, aren’t sure how badly flu will hit the country this winter. However, they recommend that all those who are entitled to a flu vaccination should take up the offer just in case.

Care home in Ellesmere Port ordered to make improvements

The charity responsible for the running of a care home in Ellesmere Port has been ordered by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to make urgent improvements to its standards, or it could face closure.

Inspectors from the CQC visited the Rivacre House care home, located in Seymour Drive, back in July 2011. Unfortunately, they found that the home failed to meet seven of the essential standards the Government has laid out to ensure the quality and safety of care services.

The CQC’s report outlined the following concerns:

• The manager of the home was not CQC-registered
• There were not enough staff to meet all residents’ needs
• Care planning and assessments were outdated
• Residents were not being supported with a healthy and nutritious diet

The charity which runs the home, Making Space, has now been ordered to improve standards and to report back to the CQC as soon as possible. The director of operations at Rivacre House, Gaynor Chisnall, said that amongst other improvements, a focus on better care training for staff was a priority. She said:

“We now have the right people in place, including a new manager, to ensure that new care plans for each individual are agreed and implemented.

“Employees are being assessed for further training, quality processes and systems are being followed stringently and a new cook and more support staff are being recruited.”