Oxford care home was ‘not always safe’ according to scathing report

A scathing report into an Oxford care home has revealed that the service was ‘not always safe’ and residents were not always protected from the risks associated with their care.

The safety at Brookfield Care Home in Little Bury, Greater Leys, was called ‘inadequate’ in the recent report into the service from the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which revealed a number of irregularities at the home.

In the health watchdog’s February 27 report, the inspectors gave the home an overall ‘requires improvement’ rating, with the service also being provided with the same rating across four out of five key areas.

Following the inspection, the home was given a warning notice that the service did not always take proper steps to mitigate the risks associated with people’s care.

The inspectors, who carried out the unannounced inspection of the 66-resident care home on January 20, said in their report: “The service was not always safe.

“People were not always protected from the risks associated with the care.

“People risk assessments had been updated to reflect people’s changing needs, however, people were not always protected from the risks associated with their care and treatment in relation to pressure area care and falls.

“They were not always protected from the risks associated with the administration of their medicines.”

The discrepancies of the service highlighted in the report included a person, who was at risk of falling, not being within reach of a call bell when they were in their room, which went against the person’s care plan.

The inspectors also found that nursing staff did not accurately fill out details in their administration of medicine.

It was also found that a nurse had left the medicines trolley unattended for 10 minutes with the keys in the lock.

Andrew Smith, Oxford East MP, said: “I have visited Brookfield in the past and seen residents getting good care, so this report came as a shock.

“It is clearly crucial that the home acts to put right the shortcomings the inspectors found, which are very worrying, and I shall check on the progress they are making.”

Steve Curran, county councillor for Blackbird Leys, said: “I will look into this to make sure we improve the situation.”

However, the home’s residents’ views of their safety contrasted with the report.

Comments from residents included: “Safe and sound. No problems at all, everything really good,” and “feel safe because I’ve never had a problem and always feel secure here. Don’t have to worry”.

The home was given a ‘requires improvement’ rating in its previous inspection in November 2014.

Ahead of the inspection, the CQC said it had been told of concerns about staff shortages.

And inspectors found that despite more staff being recently employed, there had been occasions where staff called in sick and cover could not be found at short notice.

The care home is run by charity Methodist Homes (MHA), whose spokesperson Theresa Knight said: “We acted immediately to address the areas they had identified.

“The safety and care of our residents is our top priority and we are disappointed that the care fell short of our standards.

“We take issues like this extremely seriously and made sure we acted promptly.

“Residents, relatives and staff can be assured that we will continue to monitor Brookfield to make sure that the improvements made are not only achieved but also maintained going forward.”

In 2011, it was found that one resident was left in pain and others were poorly monitored in a previous CQC report.