Hampshire County Council won't buy new care from Fareham agency after it was put into 'special measures'

AN AGENCY that provides care services for the county council won’t get new contracts until improvements have been made, following an inadequate rating from the health watchdog.
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Fairhaven Healthcare, based in Fareham, was given the lowest rating by the CQC after an inspection in January and has been put into special measures.

The report highlighted safety and the service not being well-led as key issues.

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Owner Lindokuhle Shezi said the team was ‘disappointed’ but was determined to turn things around.

Fairhaven Healthcare Ltd office in West Street, Fareham. Picture: Google Maps.Fairhaven Healthcare Ltd office in West Street, Fareham. Picture: Google Maps.
Fairhaven Healthcare Ltd office in West Street, Fareham. Picture: Google Maps.

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council’s executive member for adult social care and health, confirmed new care would not be purchased until standards improved.

Ms Shezi told The News: ‘We are disappointed and feeling let down but we are working around the clock, dealing effectively with every concern and we’ll turn these challenges around.’

The report stated that one staff member had not had a DBS check.

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It read: ‘Three staff did not have suitable references, and a disclosure and barring (DBS) check had not been undertaken for one staff member. DBS checks help employers make safe recruitment decisions.

‘We also identified unexplained gaps in staff's work history and a lack of interview records. This meant staff were working with people without the necessary checks to ensure they were fit to carry out the job they were employed for.’

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In response Ms Shezi said: ‘This is not the case, during the visit, CQC dealt with someone who had been on the registered manager role for two months and wasn’t quite familiar everything within his role.

‘At Fairhaven we never let staff go out in the field without all significant checks.’

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The CQC inspector also made comments on the quality of care provided by the agency.

It read: ‘The registered person did not have enough oversight of the service to ensure that it was being managed safely and that quality was maintained. Quality assurance processes had not identified concerns or driven sufficient improvement relating to service quality. Records were not always complete.

‘People were not always given the opportunity to feedback about their care. The lack of robust quality assurance meant people were at risk of receiving poor quality care.

‘Following the inspection, the registered person acknowledged the concerns that we identified during the inspection and told us of their plans to make improvements regarding care records, medicine records, staffing, recruitment, training and quality assurance systems.’

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Cllr Fairhurst said: ‘In the rare instances where a care provider’s services cease to meet our usual high quality standards, we work closely with the provider to ensure the required improvements are implemented as quickly as possible.

‘During this time, we maintain close contact with the individuals who are receiving care, and their families, to ensure they remain safe and appropriately supported.

‘I can confirm that no new care is being purchased from Fairhaven Healthcare until the required improvements are made.’