Staff claim new manager is turning around failing Kent Lodge Residential Home in CQC report

Kent Lodge Residential Home in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich.

Kent Lodge Residential Home in Woodbridge Road, Ipswich. - Credit: Sarah Lucy brown

The new manager of an Ipswich care home criticised by the health watchdog for putting the safety of older and vulnerable residents at risk has “brought calm about the place”, staff have said.

Kent Lodge Residential Home in Woodbridge Road was rated as inadequate in four of the five key areas by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) after an unannounced two-day full inspection in February.

Steve Trump, who has managed a number of care homes nationwide over 30 years, took over as manager on March 18.

Around five weeks later, on April 30, the CQC carried out a follow-up inspection, and has said in a new report that a host of improvements have been made despite raising some concerns over resident welfare.

The inspection report said: “The manager’s action plan demonstrated steps taken towards planning for improvement of the service.

“All of the staff and people we spoke with were complimentary about the new manager. Comments included: ‘we feel much safer now with him’; ‘we don’t just get to do what we want but we have more direction, he keeps us doing the right thing. We are all much happier now and we have had a pay rise’; and ‘the new manager is very nice, he has brought calm about the place and things get done’.”

The CQC has subsequently upgraded the care home to being rated inadequate in two of the five key areas – safe and responsive – and requires improvement in being effective, caring and well-led.

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In a short statement, Mr Trump said: “The emphasis remains in working with the CQC and Suffolk County Council to improve the services identified in the report.

“I will also mention there has been a huge amount of support from the residents and their families throughout what has been a difficult time for the staff at the home.”

Meanwhile, action has also been taken to address the situation in February in which only two out of five bathrooms were fit for use, with one having no heating all winter and others containing broken toilet seats.

But the CQC said residents were still at risk of not receiving their prescribed medication.

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