care homes and treatment

  Terry Brown 20:15 18 Feb 2012

Have you seen this site and the poor reaction it got on TV today.

It asks users of care services (and care homes) to comment on what their treatment is / was like.

The reaction from the 'Head of Care homes UK', complained that it may cause some homes to close down.

All I can say is that if they do not come up to a decent standard they have a choice, improve or close.

On the other side of the coin, the better ones will receive more enquiries and will thrive.

Every other service is open to scrutiny, why should these homes be allowed to hide behind closed doors, as once a relative is inside, it is often too late to do anything about it.

What do you think?


  mole44 05:50 19 Feb 2012

It's a good idea there are checks and balances built in were told,as you say good one will thrive bad ones will go under.If your good you'll be ok,the industry doesn't like us to know how things really are,My wife has dementia and one day she may have to go into a home,i'd like when and if a decision has to be made i have all the facts to make a decision on where she will quality commision reports mean little to me,but real peoples are more help in deciding where to put her.The care industry seem to be saying "trust us", on your bike,i'm paying and expect to be able to see how good you are at looking after my wife. If you don't like it tough,we pay your wages that simple.

  wiz-king 08:34 19 Feb 2012

The only thing that concerns me is that moaners will use it and the satisfied customers wont bother. This could cause an imbalance in the comments.

  frybluff 09:04 19 Feb 2012

I agree with wiz-king, it is a good idea in principle, but needs FAIR "moderation" to ensure that subjective, negative reviews don't become the norm. There is always a tendancy to write about the occassional negatives, more than the usual positives.

  morddwyd 09:20 19 Feb 2012

Care homes are no more likely to be closed down as a result of the odd unfair report than private hospitals, schools, retailers or a number of other service providers which can be reviewed on-line.

It would require a concerted and coordinated effort, akin to denial of serviec, which would be relatively easy to spot.

  spuds 11:24 19 Feb 2012

When discussions of this type takes place, it usually brings all sorts of comments and responses, mainly I suspect is that one day it will involve us personally, either through a relative or ourselves requiring these services!.

With reference to mole44 remark at 5.50am today. The government select committee is conducting an investigation into the role and activities of the Care Quality Commission, and seeing the results on the televised program the other evening wasn't very encouraging. There was all sorts of questions being raised about the length of times, reports and meetings from those reports were taking place, and what they were actually achieving. One such review seemed to be two years in the making, and really nothing to show for it so far. I was getting the opinion that the Care Quality Commission would soon need to reorganise itself to cover its existence, and this select committee investigation might report that!.

Regarding closing down care homes, isn't this already happening, because some care home owners are saying that they cannot survive under present financial conditions. Other care homes are being closed, because of reports of neglect and other bad practices, like those aired on television last year, which as now resulted in prosecutions and closures due to those involved. Even local council's are trying to offload what few care homes that they run, by trying to turn them over to the private sector, with incentives for transferring.

Where I live there are quite a number of various types of care homes. Some are having major refurbishment programs, while others are struggling along. Only last year, we had a care home that was closed immediately on inspection. That inspection was the result of a whistle-blower, because of serious failing standards. When the staff of a care home as to go to the local supermarket and purchase 'value' items (sometimes using their own money, taken from their meagre wages) so the residents can eat, then something is very seriously wrong, with care for those that require it.

My own father died in a care home many years ago, when these were a 'new thing'. It didn't come cheap, but we could afford it. When he died it took the care home management well over 6 hours to notify the family, and when we arrived, we were presented with a final bill and a few bin liner bags with his personal contents. We then had the upheaval of trying to locate where his body had been sent, because the care home didn't know. Eventually after waiting for a GP to finish his rounds, we were informed that one of the local undertaker/carpenter was storing the body. Not a very good experience, but perhaps things have improved since those early days?.

Apologies for the long speech or rant, but when you have experiences of this type, you tend not to forget them in a hurry?.

  Terry Brown 20:29 19 Feb 2012

I think the keyword is FAIR . If complaints are received their should be a system where the care home has a chance to address the problem (if one exists), however if they do not address any problems within a reasonable time then action should be taken.

I agree their may be those who will moan about anything, but if these are looked info fairly (and quickly) by the local council or / and community forums.

I also believe 'Snap' inspections should be carried out on a regular basis by a community body with the power to report any problems to the person in charge and a copy to the local council for their records.

The Care Home should also have the right to reply to any criticisms and /or challenge the report .


  Forum Editor 23:01 19 Feb 2012

The reality is that running a home for old people, many of whom may have physical and/or mental difficulties is anything but a picnic. It needs people with a special set of skills and a tolerant and patient character to do the work, and unfortunately such people don't grow on trees.

It's yet another of those subjects on which people on the outside feel able to express opinions without really being aware of the facts. In an ideal world all old people - and most of us will be old someday - would end their days in comfort and tranquillity, being looked after by caring staff who afford their residents as much respect and dignity as possible. Unfortunately we don't inhabit such a world, and the lottery of life will mean that some will get an excellent deal whilst others don't.

For some reason quality care of the aged is something that everyone pays lip service to until they actually have to get involved in the realities of difficult old people who soil their beds and behave in an outlandish fashion - dementia is a cruel condition for both sufferers and carers.

We can all hypothesise about what should be done in the care home industry, but when it comes down to it we don't seem to be able to make it happen. I suspect that having a website where people can 'out' care homes they don't like for one reason or another is unlikely to solve any problems at all.

  onionskin 23:16 19 Feb 2012

Round here, they advertise on lamposts for care workers.

  birdface 15:01 20 Feb 2012

Well I can only talk about one Care Home and I would Give it a massive Zero out of a hundred and I pity those that send their parents or loved ones there without the knowledge of how bad it is or was.

Why the Government will not pay members of the Family who would need to give up work to look after elderly relatives I don't know.

It would be cheaper for them,And the relatives would be able to be looked after in there own homes and be with the family that they love.

I do know that in some cases that is not always possible but would think it would be for the Majority that are in care homes.

  HondaMan 16:04 20 Feb 2012

Both my mother and aunt lived in care homes, one private and one ex-local authority. The private home whose fees were lower could show many homes how it should be done. They had the most caring philosophy of any home I have been in, and I'vce been in a few. When my mother died I wrote them a letter expressing my deepest thanks, not least for doing a job which I knew I could not do myself.

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