We’re thrilled to announce that our Kempston care home has been given an official ‘Good’ rating by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the care home regulator, at the home’s first inspection. It’s an endorsement of the entire team at Baycroft Kempston to have achieved the second-highest possible CQC rating at the first time of asking.
Kempston’s General Manager, Clare Twiss, tells us more.
“I joined Baycroft in April 2019, supporting our care home in Orpington before helping prepare for Kempston to open in November 2019. We welcomed our first resident in early December, only a few months before the pandemic began. We’ve been looking forward to our first CQC inspection quite impatiently, actually, because it’s the probably the most important factor people take into account when choosing a care home. Baycroft is well established and has an excellent reputation in Essex, where the care home has been open longer. Opening three care homes in Bedfordshire just before a pandemic has made it harder to raise awareness in the local community and demonstrate why our facilities and the quality of life here are so good. The care home in Kempston has space for 80 residents, but we currently only have 11 residents, with two more arriving in the next week or so. I expect we’ll see more enquiries quite quickly, even with Covid, now that the CQC has published its report.”
Which sort of CQC inspection did you have?
“The sort where you only have ten minutes’ notice that the inspector will be coming! We had the Five Key Questions inspection, the CQC’s unannounced inspection. Because of Covid, all care home visits have to be announced, but with only a ten-minute warning. I literally had a call saying, ‘Hi Clare, I’m in the car park,’ giving me ten minutes to let my team know that there’d be some changes in our day!
“Our receptionist gave the inspector a full set of PPE, ran through the standard questions related to Covid, and when I met her, the first thing the inspector mentioned was how streamlined and efficient that process was. So, we’d made a good impression before she got over the threshold!
“I gave the inspector a full tour of the service, and then she reviewed staff files over lunch in the restaurant, observing lunch service. All of our residents actually chose to eat in the restaurant that lunchtime, when I’d half-expected them all to eat elsewhere just because the inspector was there! She spent some time talking with some of our residents and then sat to talk with some of the staff individually.
“The inspector said she’d be with us a couple of hours; she actually ended up staying for about four. Like the entire care industry – like every industry – the CQC has had to change the way it works because of Covid. Ordinarily, the inspectors would review all of your documents right here in the home, but instead, later that day I was emailed a list of all the documentation – care plans, activity timelines and so forth - that the inspector wanted to have scanned and sent across to her.”
What is a Five Key Question inspection?
“Currently the CQC is doing three types of inspection: an Infection Control inspection, a Key Question inspection where one or two of the five key questions are assessed, and the Five Key Question inspection. With the Five Key Question inspection, you have just a ten-minute warning and all areas of the service are assessed against the CQC’s five key questions: Is the service safe / effective / caring / responsive / well-led? We received a Good rating for all five of the questions.”
What do you feel were the highlights of the review?
“For us, it’s probably anything related to how our residents and their relatives are responding to living here and the services they receive. That’s what matters, after all. The inspector spoke with residents and relatives and the report does include some quotes from residents which are really gratifying to hear, such as ‘The staff are smashing, they are wonderful and can’t do enough’, and from relatives, such as ‘The level of care given is outstanding. Staff take time to make sure care is individual to the person. It is the best decision we made moving [family member’s name] to the home.’
“We know we aim to provide this sort of experience, but to have people pass that feedback on to the inspector independently is really lovely.
“In fact, this report is an absolute testament to what the team does every single day. I am so proud of them – I’ve got a fantastic team. As a manager, I know how lucky I am with the team we’ve built around us. And this report showcases what they do day in, day out. That’s not just because the inspector was here, either. A couple of the carers had come to me as soon as word got out that the inspection was happening and asked, ‘What do we do, what do we do?’ – because an inspection is so important and you’re really put under the microscope. I just said, ‘Do what you always do – there will be no problems!’ So, they did, and their high standards are reflected in the CQC report.”