A new analysis of Care Quality Commission (CQC) Inspections into care homes across the county, conducted by the charity Independent Age, shows that Westminster has the 10th worst care homes in the UK.
It is deeply troubling that since the Westminster’s decision to transfer management of its council care homes to Sanctuary Care, service standards at the Council’s Carlton Dene care home in Maida Vale have declined. When run directly by the Council in 2014 it met all the required standards, however when it was assessed again in 2017 the inspection found that the home now ‘Requires improvement’. The inspection found Carlton Dene was under performing in the vital areas of care, safety and leadership.
Before this damaging CQC assessment, in April 2017, Westminster Labour had warned the Council that Sanctuary Care had lost many of the experienced staff who had left in its first 18 months of operation and who were replaced by new staff paid less than the London Living Wage.
The CQC found in 2017 that Care UK’s Forrester Court near Westbourne Green and the independently run St Georges in Pimlico also ‘require improvement’ , along with a small specialist unit near Westbourne Park. It is worth noting that Westminster’s tri-borough partner Kensington and Chelsea has the 4th worst care homes in the country, which suggests there may be a systemic problem.
Westminster Labour Group Deputy Leader Patricia McAllister said “Westminster residents need to have the confidence that the council is doing all it can to ensure our elderly and vulnerable people get the best standard of care. A Labour Council would demand urgent improvements from its contractor Sanctuary Care and use its purchasing power to push for changes from Care UK and other under performing local suppliers.”