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‘Bullied’ manager quits Anglesea Heights Nursing Home run by BUPA during CQC inspection

PUBLISHED: 06:00 21 January 2016 | UPDATED: 13:44 22 January 2016

Anglesea Heights Nursing Home in Ipswich.

Anglesea Heights Nursing Home in Ipswich.

The care home, one of the largest in Ipswich, was placed in special measures and faces the prospect of closing in six months.

Anglesea Heights Nursing Home in Ipswich.Anglesea Heights Nursing Home in Ipswich.

The care home, in Anglesea Road, which is privately run by BUPA, was given an overall rating of inadequate and placed in special measures – the worst possible outcome – by the health watchdog after an unannounced inspection.

The news comes amid fresh fears over the standards of care homes in the region. Almost half in Ipswich are now below satisfactory levels.

The damning report by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said:

- The manager felt bullied by her direct line management

- Faeces were found on a shower chair

- There was a chaotic and loud atmosphere at lunchtime

- Nurses are austere and distant

- Patients are deprived of their freedom in unsuitable chairs

On Tuesday, BUPA started advertising for a new care home manager on a starting salary of £45,000. It is also advertising for a nurse, care assistant and an assistant chef to join the 120-bed care home, which is split into four Victorian-listed buildings.

The CQC unannounced inspection took place on November 5 and 19 last year. The report issued last Friday showed three of the five key categories – safety, effectiveness and being well-led – were rated inadequate.

The other two, caring and responsive, were ranked requires improvement – above inadequate but below outstanding and good.

The care home, previously rated requires improvement after its last inspection in October/November 2014, has six months to make significant improvements to stave off closure, the CQC warned. It will be kept under review.

It said a “local manager with a good track record” appointed in June last year had a “good grasp” of the issues required to turn around the care home.

“However, they were not appropriately supported by BUPA to bring about change,” the report said.

It added: “The manager was stressed. When the manager was appointed… no management induction was conducted as promised by the provider.

“There was no mentoring from other homes managers as also promised.

“The manager stated she has felt bullied by her direct line management… and felt isolated to drive improvement alone.

“During our inspection days, the manager resigned. We also found out that a number of other key staff in management and training had or planned to resign. This… led us to have serious concerns about the management structure.”

Other parts of the report state: “In Bourne House, a bathroom was not clean. The shower chair had faeces on it. There was no toilet roll available. We fed this back to the manager who… was aware of the issues.

“During lunchtime (at) Bourne, staff appeared rushed… and did not work at a pace that suited the needs of people living with dementia. The atmosphere on Bourne was chaotic and loud. We saw people distressed, walking and pacing around… the second day was calmer.

“One person said ‘some of the nurses are a bit austere, they can be distant… as they are too busy doing medical things’. (But another said) ‘some of the staff are very special people’.”

Out of the 35 care homes in the Ipswich area, one is rated outstanding, 19 are good, 14 require improvement and one is inadequate, according to the latest CQC figures.

A spokesman for the care home said: “We took immediate action last year to address the CQC’s concerns. Over the last two months we have been working closely with external health professionals and will continue to do so.

“We are implementing a robust leadership and management plan which is beginning to reduce the use of agency staff, and are investing heavily in training.

“We have also introduced daily clinical walks around the home, regular clinical reviews and now host regular resident and relative meetings.

“The health and wellbeing of our residents is our top priority and we will continue to embed best practices at the home.”

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council (SCC) said: “We share the CQC’s concerns and have suspended admissions funded by ACS (SCC’s adult care and support) to Anglesea House. We will continue to work actively to monitor the service.”

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