Top marks from the Care Inspectorate
Blog by Maureen Tait, Sheltered Housing Services Manager, Port of Leith Housing Association
As anyone who has experienced an inspection by the Care Inspectorate will tell you, there are many strands to the inspection of services and it’s an extremely thorough process. It involves self-assessment, questionnaires, meeting and chatting to tenants and staff on a one-to-one basis and in groups and evaluating the standards of the work we carry out.
All the tenants and staff at our three sheltered housing complexes (Hermitage Court, St Nicholas Court and Jameson Place) in Leith, Edinburgh, had the opportunity, and were encouraged, to feed into the process to ensure there wasn’t any cherry picking of the information the Care Inspectorate gathered and that the outcome was open and transparent.
After all that, I was absolutely thrilled when the report came back following our unannounced inspection, and I discovered that not only had we maintained our fantastic grade fives for staffing, leadership, and management, but we had also maintained the highest possible grade (six) for the quality of care and support we provide. I can’t imagine a better endorsement of the fantastic work carried out by our team. I’m very proud of them.
Getting the highest grade takes dedication and commitment from staff members. It also requires staff to be passionate about working with older people, to feel valued and supported, to receive excellent training and to be creative in their approach to work.
In its report, the Care Inspectorate described us as being “excellent at supporting people which enables people to make individual choices and reach their potential”. It also noted that “people were heard and supported to say how they felt. People were helped to feel included. People were treated with respect. The service was excellent at communication with people and involving them”.
Our tenants were also generous in their praise, with one of them telling the Inspectorate:
“Staff are very friendly, helpful, kind and considerate, and we are very proud of the manner in which we are treated – first class service!”
Of course, I already knew that our team is committed to delivering services for older people and ensuring the best possible outcomes for them, but it means the world to me to hear that our tenants and the Inspectorate agree.
So what’s next for us? We have a fantastic team, and we’re all fired up to carry on with all our good work and to do our best to keep improving. This means that we will keep on listening and learning, continue to be forward thinking and challenge the status quo. We will look for new and innovative ways to meet the needs of our tenants, and we will continue to work collaboratively with others to maximise our learning and development, sharing good practice and supporting each other along the way.
Next month, we are looking forward to completing an extension which will add eight properties to St Nicholas Court which means we will be able to support even more people to live independently and lead fulfilled lives. There are lots of exciting times ahead for us.
You can read our inspection report on the Care Inspectorate website.