Watchdog tipped off after fears about Wigan care home's end of life care
A Wigan care home has been criticised by health watchdogs for failing to provide consistent end of life care to its elderly patients.
Westwood Lodge Care Home has been told to make improvements following an unannounced inspection from the Care Quality Commission.
The care home, off Poolstock Lane, was found to be in breach of several health and safety regulations during the visit which occurred in September.
Inspectors, who have this week released the report, criticised the safety of the service as well raising shortcomings in how responsive and well-led the establishment is.
Despite negative aspects of the review, plenty of credit was given to the staff for being “caring” and “effective” and treating the residents with “respect and dignity”.
During the course of the report, particular emphasis was put on end of life care after the authority was tipped off by borough healthcare commissioners.
Inspectors wrote: “The inspection was prompted in part by information we received from the Clinical Commissioning Group regarding the quality of care planning documentation in relation to end of life care and the lack of qualified and permanent nursing staff to support people’s end of life care needs.
“We found the lack of completed documentation and poor communication between different staff roles was negatively affecting the provision of end of life care.
“People’s care plans did not contain adequate information regarding their end of life wishes and plans for end of life care were not consistently recorded, which meant people may not receive essential support in accordance with their preferences and choices.
“The service failed to ensure plans were consistently in place to ensure the people were enabled to make decisions about their end of life wishes.
“One end of life care plan had been partially completed but there was no record of this having been communicated to the wider staff group.
“There was no record to identify the reasons for commencement of the end of life care plan or discussion with the person’s family.”
The authority looked at care planning documents for two people who recently died at the home, and found that one person, who had been admitted to the home for end of life care, did not have a completed initial assessment or care plan in place.
A spokesperson for HC-One, the management group which owns Westwood Lodge, said: “The health, safety and wellbeing of all our residents is our top priority.
“We take all feedback from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) seriously and were pleased with their positive comments regarding the kindness of staff and the effectiveness of the care we provide.
“Immediately following the inspection, we acted to address the CQC’s recommendations.
“This includes fully reviewing all resident care and medication plans and reviewing our record keeping processes.
“We’re pleased with the positive progress the team has made and, as a result, all of the CQC’s recommendations have been fully actioned.
“We look forward to demonstrating this at our next inspection.
“More broadly, the home has a 9.3 out of 10 rating on the independent care home comparison and review website carehome.co.uk which we feel more accurately reflects the quality and standard of care provided to residents each and every day.”