8.1 How the Responsible Individual will maintain oversight of the management, quality, safety and effectiveness of the service
We provide care and support to people over the age of 18 years in the Vale of Glamorgan (mainly Penarth, Sully, Dinas Powys and Barry) who, for whatever reason, can benefit from such help. It may be that people can be helped to stay in familiar surroundings at home rather than go into a residential home. It may also be that people simply want to improve their quality of life by making things easier. While providing personal and practical assistance we also remain aware that people also have their own personal circumstances and personal background that is the context in which we provide that assistance.
We provide this help at any time, day and night, and on every day of the year. Our clients can be of any age over 18 but all have either a mental or physical difficulty that results in them facing difficulties regarding daily living. Our clients therefore range from young people, for example with brain damage or sensory loss, to older people with dementia or physical difficulties. Relatives and friends who are the main carers can also benefit from our services by being relieved of some of their caring responsibilities.
‘Values’ and ‘Principles’ are fundamental building blocks of the way we approach the service. We believe that by making sure that the way we do the work reflects these values you will receive a better service. It is our hope that this practical application of human values and principles results in an agency and service that feels ‘different’. We then will have created a real choice for people seeking Care and Support.
We can provide personal assistance with dressing, bathing, shaving, eating, and getting up in the morning, going to bed at night, companionship, night sitting – and much more. While providing this personal assistance we can provide practical assistance with shopping, collecting pensions, housework, laundry, making beds, cooking meals, help with medication – and much more.
Our staff are there to encourage the client to maintain their independence but also help monitoring any needs that may change i.e. physically, mentally and socially. It is important that staff notice, for example that there is a low stock of food, to inform management for us to contact the family and/or social worker. We expect our staff to play an active role in observing and reporting any problems around our client’s safety, home environment and general wellbeing. Part of our mission is to encourage our clients to voice their opinions and choices, for us to work with them to maintain or promote their independence and ensure positive outcomes for them. We are dependent on our clients’ feedback to ensure that we identify any areas of improvement and assure our clients that we value their feedback and have a commitment to deliver a high standard of service to them.
Whilst we can list these activities, however, we go ‘beyond the tasks’ and help people live the life they want despite the personal issues they face. Having fun, enjoying social activities, maintaining relationships and achieving personal goals are aspirations we all have.
The broad purpose of Care in the Vale is to provide personal and practical assistance to people who, for whatever reason, are facing personal or practical difficulties. We do this so that people’s quality of life in their own home may be improved.
The people we help (our clients and their families) fall into three categories;
- Younger people who may have physical or mental difficulties, or who may have poor health, but who also wish to maintain and develop their social life.
- Older people who may also experience similar issues, in their case possibly including dementia, but whose priorities could be different to those of younger people
- Family and friends who are the main carers of people facing difficulties and who need a break from their responsibilities
The Care in the Vale Vision
That all people receiving social care enjoy their lives
The Care in the Vale Mission
Care in the Vale aims to ensure that people receiving social care can enjoy the good things in life
Benefits (Outcomes) we aim to bring
Comfort, Independence and Peace of Mind are the ‘Benefits’ that we aim to bring. In order to provide these benefits, we work to fulfil the following Aims:
- To help people gain physical and mental strength. (Comfort and Independence)
- To help people maximise their abilities, regain lost skills and find practical solutions to practical problems. (Independence)
- To provide all services in a way that is caring, knowledgeable, creative, respectful and reliable. (Peace of Mind)
We therefore not only provide ‘care’ where it is needed but also, as much as possible, to liberate people from the consequences of their difficulties.
To fulfil these Aims we provide certain Services in a manner that is in keeping with our Beliefs.
- We believe that people using our services are not defined by their frailty, their illness or the disability they face. They are defined by the content of their character and their unique personal history. Their frailty, illness or their disability is but a part of that history.
- We believe that people want to have a decent quality of life (Comfort), want to have a sense of achievement (Independence) and want to feel safe (Peace of Mind).
4 Range of Needs we Support
We can address the needs of adults in their own home, numerically mainly those over the age of 60, and the different issues they may face.
We also recognise that needs may change over time and we will adapt accordingly. This could involve special extra training for staff, ‘doubling up’ on certain calls, reviewing the length of calls or coming up with creative practical solutions to newly developing problems. We will do this in consultation with the client and their family and any other person with a legitimate interest in their wellbeing.
However, although we believe there is a not always healthy tendency to be problem or illness focussed at the expense of focussing on the person, if it comes to the point whereby a doctor or similar professional says a ‘specialist’ service is required we will not be that service – even if we believe we could still provide a high quality service that concentrates on the whole person.
Where a specialist service is not required we have experience addressing the practical, physical and emotional needs of adults with learning disabilities, age related frailty, substance misuse complications and needs that result from health issues such as Parkinson’s Disease, Motor Neuron Disease, arthritis etc All staff will of course be trained in all mobility related skills (Moving and Handling).
To respect our core values of care our highly personalised person-centred care planning process is essential. We believe we care for individuals with unique personalities, core beliefs and life experiences, who just happen to require a bit of help.
The care plans are developed with the help of those that we care for, their families/ friends and carers. Our background information or the biography section of the plan is crucial to enable Care Assistants to truly know the person they are caring for and essential to promoting independence and choice and respecting the core values and beliefs of the people we care for.
When we do an initial assessment, we ask the right set of questions i.e. preference of care worker’s gender, any religious beliefs, dietary requirements, language preference etc. We build these preferences into the client’s personal plan to ensure that we send a person to the client that would have a good understanding of their beliefs and culture. If this is not possible, we will ensure that we provide the staff member with as much information as possible to ensure that they are able to carry out tasks according to individual’s preferences and needs. We would also take these requirements into account when preparing meals, going out shopping or for a social activity and ensure that our staff are respectful of any cultural beliefs of the clients and their families.
We treat all our clients as individuals and attend to their needs individually as we do not follow the same process/procedure for all our clients. We promote person-centred care and support and want our clients to maintain and/or improve their daily quality of life. We therefore require our staff to monitor any deterioration or change in our clients’ wellbeing and report it to us for us to be able to contact other professionals and/or their family members.
Our care plans are structured to focus on what our clients can do, as well as what they can’t and create solutions of how we can best structure our care to promote and encourage their capabilities. Where a particular need is identified, the care plan highlights how staff can effectively address that need. Staff are key to the success of person-centred care planning. Staff draw upon the information contained in the care plan to guide their actions and interaction with the people they care for. The life history section of the care plan helps to ensure people’s beliefs and lifestyles are respected and facilitated and that people’s choices are put into practice.
Once developed the care plans are regularly reviewed to ensure that the person is responding well to the routines and that the plan is a true reflection of the individual it is designed to describe. Family and relatives are encouraged to participate in the feedback about a client’s care package as far as is practicable and are invited to formal reviews. Team Leaders or Senior Care Assistants attend these reviews every 6 months and it is a chance for us to ensure everyone is receiving the support they need in line with their personal choices and preferences.
We will also review a client’s care plan if there is a change in their circumstances or in the equipment that we use. This could be because of a hospital admission, a fall, health issues etc. We depend a lot on our Care Assistants for feedback about how the care package is going to ensure that we continue to meet the needs and wishes of our clients.
Ad hoc reviews can also take place due to changes introduced by a Social Worker, GP or other professional where we would ensure that we update the client’s care plan and other documentation.
Before mentioning the more practical elements of care and support we believe it important to have the right ‘starting point’ – the approach we take.
From the very first contact with a potential new member of staff there is a strong emphasis on getting the right people – not right because they are experienced but right because they have a sense of humanity.
Our question to ourselves is therefore ‘What does one human being do for another?’ rather than ‘Is it in my job description?’. Of course, there are lines that must not be crossed, and these are explored during induction.
All this allows us to free staff up to put their caring nature into their work for the benefit of the clients at the same time as avoiding the potential pitfalls.
We end up with care staff who are genuinely interested in other people and managers who are strong enough to let them express this in their work rather than be micro-managed so that they don’t.
Stephen Gamgee – Managing Director/Responsible Individual
Stephen has spent most of his life working with people who for one reason or another could be classed as ‘vulnerable’. This includes homeless people, people with alcohol or drug problems and people with mental health problems.
Stephen moved to Wales in 1993 as head of a Cardiff based charity for the homeless and for the next 16 years as its Chief Executive he developed it into one of the largest and most respected charities in Wales operating throughout the country. He believes that this was achieved by having principles and values and making them a practical reality. He now wants to apply the same approach to people who need help to stay in their own home. In 2008, he was awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for his work with vulnerable and homeless people.
Isabel Miller – Registered Manager
Isabel was born in South Africa and has had a successful career in banking which has given her many skills in administration. On moving to Wales in August 2009 she wanted to develop a career with a social purpose. She became a care assistant in a social care agency and rapidly was promoted to Team Leader and equally rapidly acquired the level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management for Social Care Services (Adult Management). Isabel has been the Registered Manager for Care in the Vale since 2013 and shares with Stephen the wish to have a flexible service that puts our values into practice but also to have this service based on a platform of efficient administration.
Isabel’s responsibilities cover all aspects of the provision of care in the community by our Care Assistants. Isabel’s experience coupled with her formal training means that she can manage the service and staff in a style that encourages staff and ensures that people feel comfortable and supported.
Team Leaders/Team Managers
We have 4 Team Leaders who each manage a group of clients and care staff to ensure that we closely monitor clients’ care needs, drive positive outcomes and lead and manage our care staff team well. This approach also helps us to share information with each other better and we are kept up to date about any changes or concerns and allow us to resolve problems quicker and more effectively.
Three of the Team Leaders hold the level 5 Diploma in Leadership and Management in Social Care Services (Adult Management) while 1 Team Leader holds the NVQ Level 4 in Health and Social Care.
Senior Care Assistants
We have a team of Senior Care staff who work alongside the Team Leaders and Care Assistants. Our Senior Care staff have gained good experience within the care sector that allows them to provide support to our Team Leaders and alleviate some of their day-to-day responsibilities when needed. They also offer our Care Assistants expert guidance while working out in the field and are involved in inducting all new recruits. Two of our Senior Care staff have already acquired their QCF Level 2 in Health and Social Care while 1 is progressing in the QCF Level 2, another has recently successfully completed the QCF Level 3 in Health and Social Care and another holds the older NVQ Level 4.
There are thousands of care staff in Wales – and therefore a huge amount of experience, which is usually regarded as a ‘good thing’. However, we at Care in the Vale believe this is not necessarily the case – lots of experience doing poor quality work with a poor attitude is certainly not a ‘good thing’!
Our Care Assistants will all have been recruited because they are ‘The Right Fit’ and share our values. We will search for people who are compassionate, creative, flexible and optimistic. If they also have knowledge and experience so much the better. However, we can always give people knowledge and experience – it is much more difficult changing someone with different values! We currently have over 50 full time Care Assistants and around 7 part-time Care Assistants working for us.
We ensure that they are properly inducted in their role and trained according to the Social Care Induction Framework and developed as carers to exceed standards of best practice. The Induction programme for our new recruits includes a significant theory element designed to stimulate and improve overall awareness and the importance of Promoting the Rights of Individuals, Equality and Diversity, Deprivation of Liberty, Effective Communication, Data Protection, Safeguarding as well as other sections that cover the practicalities of First Aid, Moving and Handling, Basic Food Hygiene, Infection Control, Handling Medication, Fire Safety, COSHH and Dementia.
Further specialist courses undertaken by staff include caring for people with Parkinson’s disease, Palliative Care, Nutrition, Falls Prevention, Challenging Behaviour, Epilepsy Awareness, Catheter and Stoma Care, Pressure areas and courses aimed specifically at those caring for people with Dementia.
We also aim to provide our staff with the opportunity to participate in developing their personal training and development plans and ensure that they acquire the necessary skills to help them do a fantastic job. Care staff are encouraged to participate in the QCF Level 2 or 3 to develop specialisms in subjects that interest them as well as increase their understanding of the issues surrounding the provision of care for the elderly.
Out of our Care Assistant team we have 1 staff member that has completed the QCF Level 3 in Health and Social Care, 3 that have completed the QCF Level 2 while another 10 of our Care Assistants are currently in the process of completing their QCF Level 2.
All staff will have an enhanced DBS check and at least 2 references (that we confirm as genuine) that confirm their suitability for the positions. We also ensure staff hold a valid UK driving license (where applicable) valid business insurance, proof of a National Insurance number and right to work in the UK. All new staff will attend an induction programme and shadow an experienced carer for a minimum of 16 hours before working with our clients. All our staff attend refresher or specialised training throughout the year to ensure all staff are adequately trained to deliver the best care to our clients.
Care in the Vale currently provide domiciliary care more than 1 200 care hours over a 7-day period. This can be broken down to approximately 13 dayshifts (06:45 – 14:30) and 8 evening shifts (16:00 – 23:00) and several calls that fall outside these hours. On average over 1 week 50 staff members will work on average 25 – 30 hours. However, we believe that offering flexible working patterns are crucial for staff retention and therefore some staff may choose to work more hours per week than others. These numbers are subject to continuous review and are based upon the dependency levels of those that we care for.
Leadership within a company is critical to all its operations. We have a strong belief in leadership but will, when necessary, use management to ensure that our staff team operate and perform within the guidelines of the company’s policies and procedures that underpins our values and beliefs.
We believe our staff should be liberated as the best solutions do not necessarily come from a book but from creative thinkers. This makes our staff feel valued as we listen to them and encourage them to look for solutions when faced with a problem. Our staff can visit the office base at any time for support or advice about a particular issue.
It is imperative to give staff positive feedback/praise when they deserve it but at the same time we believe that constructive feedback is also essential to ensure that staff know when they are doing something wrong and allowing them the opportunity to put things right. This we aim to do as often as needed.
Our Team Leaders conduct face-to-face supervision meetings with their staff members at least every 3 months. We also carry out unannounced spot checks where our Team Leaders or Senior Care staff will assess the Care Assistants while they are working hands-on. Feedback from these spot checks are usually discussed during the supervision meetings.
We also conduct team meetings every 3 months which we like to keep informal to allow everyone to voice their opinion and share ideas in a comfortable team environment.
Sharing ideas about how to support certain clients will allow them to change their approach with clients and ultimately ensure positive outcomes for our clients.
We intend to ensure, to the best of our ability that the welfare of our staff is always considered by mentoring, supervising, training and managing staff in their role and to ensure they understand their need to ensure the safety of the client, themselves and the service at all times.
All staff receive their Induction training before working with our clients which is presented by our Managing Director and accredited third-party trainers. The Induction Training involves training on the following subjects:
- Role of the Care Worker
- Principles of Care
- Person Centred Care
- Values and Principles in Social Care
- Care Inspectorate Wales
- Care Council Wales
- Code of Professional Practice
- Equality Act 2010 and Equality and Diversity
- Effective Communication
- Data Protection
- Active Participation
- Handling and Prompting Medication
- Personal Protective Equipment
- Infection Control
- Dementia / Alzheimer’s
- Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH)
- Maintain Safety at Work
- All Wales Moving and Handling
- First Aid
Interaction with caring well-trained staff is essential for the wellbeing of the people we care for. Staff will receive any specialised training they would need to meet an individual client’s need as these needs arise and attend regular training sessions to ensure our Care Assistants have up-to-date knowledge about best practice guidelines and are well equipped to deliver a high standard of care and support to our clients. Some of the many specialised training subjects our staff attend include:
- Social Services and Wellbeing Act
- Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty
- Catheter and Stoma Care
- Pressure Areas
- Falls Prevention
- Epilepsy Awareness
- Aging, Dying, Death and Bereavement
- Improving Food and Nutrition Care
- Alcohol Awareness
- Deafness/Visual awareness training
We fully understand the need for continuity in the provision of Care Assistants but sometimes this may not be possible dues to sickness and other reasons. Any new worker will have had all the training and checks that the usual workers will have had. If necessary a senior Manager, already known to the client, will attend.
If the Registered Manager is to be away for more than a month a deputy will move officially into their post until their return. As we have a policy of ‘recruiting from within’, this person will already have been trained for this eventuality. CIW will be informed of a month’s absence. Care in the Vale does not use staff from other agencies – it prefers staff thoroughly steeped in the Care in the Vale’s values. Only if we somehow are not able to fulfil our legal or moral requirements will we use agency staff.
If a member of staff is sick, on holiday or unable to attend a call for any reason then an alternative person will be provided, by mutual agreement with the client, where possible. The client will be informed at the earliest opportunity.
During severe weather conditions: e.g. extreme temperature change and hazardous conditions when travelling to work e.g. roads closed due to heavy snowfall.
We will operate an emergency service which is as follows:
- Critical – the client’s health safety and wellbeing are at a high risk
- Non-critical – The client has alternative care provision, or the task can be completed at another time e.g. domestic duties
We will make all effort to attend all calls and this system will only be used if the conditions are so severe we must prioritise clients’ needs.
Sometimes things happen beyond our control – traffic accidents, roads blocked etc. – that cause us to be late. Sometimes it may be the case that the previous client could be in personal crisis and out of sheer humanity the Care Assistant couldn’t leave them. (We are sure clients can understand this – and we wouldn’t leave them in similar circumstances.) We promise to inform clients if we are delayed.
8.1 How the Responsible Individual will maintain oversight of the management, quality, safety and effectiveness of the service
The Registered Manager will manage the care and support and ensure compliance with the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014 and Regulation of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016. The Registered Manager will be responsible for keeping the Responsible Individual up to date of any areas that may not be compliant and advise him what plan of action will be put in place to ensure that we meet the requirements.
The Responsible Individual and Registered Manager will work together to deliver a successful business model that provides not just high quality but innovative services to clients. The Responsible Individual will approach the Registered Manager with new ideas about delivering our service and the Registered Manager will ensure that we do this in line with the rules and regulations. Open communication is vital as well as building a relationship on mutual trust and respect. We talk openly about problems/concerns and deal with it in an open and honest way in the office we share.
The Responsible Individual and Registered Manager will have both formal and informal meetings where we will discuss any problems or concerns and work on solutions together ultimately ensuring that we achieve the best possible outcome for our clients, staff and, of course, the business. The Registered Manager will also ensure that the Responsible Individual is included in important correspondence and meetings with clients, staff or other professionals if need be.
The Registered Manager delivers a monthly service monitor report where a reflective view will be given about the service the previous month. The report contains statistics about call attendance, covering of annual and sick leave, complaints and/or compliments received etc.
We recognise that to improve and continue to offer a high standard of care to the people we care for, we need to listen and give a voice to the people who use our service. We appreciate that those with dementia may find it difficult and frustrating to communicate so we also depend on family and/or friends of the people we care for to feedback opinions of our service and how we can meet our clients’ needs better. Daily our Care Assistants take time to talk and listen to the people we care for. Staff are trained to recognise that this daily feedback is important, and it is fed back into a person’s care plan via a Team Leader or the Registered Manager. Above all we encourage the people we care for and their family to relay even small issues and comments as we welcome feedback however small.
More formally twice a year we issue our Quality Assurance survey and the results from this are produced in a report on what we are doing well and any issues that need to be addressed. Alongside this, we collect other relevant data throughout the year which then will be summarised into an annual report that helps to guide our strategy for improvement for the coming year.
We trust that the Quality Assurance surveys allow our clients the opportunity to tell us what we have and what we have not been doing well. We also include our clients in their reviews and create an opportunity for them, their families, and other stake holders to raise any concerns with us about their care. We listen to our clients and work with them to ensure that we take their concerns and suggestions from their service reviews and use the feedback when and where necessary to change the way, we do things to ensure that we improve the quality of our service on a continuous basis.
Attention to the smallest detail is pivotal to everything that we do. Feedback from those that we care for and their families is an important aspect of our quality programme.
Language and communication are vital to understand what care needs are, how to plan the meeting of those needs and how to effectively review the success or otherwise of meeting those needs.
When recruiting staff, we note which language they speak and whether it is fluent, basic or a few words.
When considering providing care for someone we will ask what their preferred language is and if not English, what is the minimum they will accept the care being delivered in their preferred language. We will then match their wishes to a realistic expectation of what can be delivered. We will not offer to provide care if we cannot match their wishes. It is important to have realistic expectations to avoid disappointments.
If we can meet their wishes the first assessment of need (and later reviews) can only be carried out by a member of staff fluent in the preferred language. If we don’t have someone we will use a translation service. We currently have within central services a Welsh speaker who can act as an interpreter.
It is unlikely that we could provide all care calls in languages other than English unless the level of need was extremely low (one or two visits a week). It may be that we can agree to at least one visit to be in their preferred language per week as a minimum.
We currently have speakers in English, Welsh, Arabic and a number of European languages. We will use internal linguists to translate ‘hello’, ‘good-bye’, ‘thank you’ and ‘please’ into whatever language a client speaks. These will be spelled phonetically and circulated in the weekly staff newsletter.
In a broader sense of ‘communication’ we would want clients to enjoy their care visits and to this end we encourage staff to have conversations with clients in which they find out about each other (a two-way conversation) and to have ‘problem-free talk’ i.e. conversations about what people like rather than always about their problems.
Care in the Vale recognises that there will be times when our staff may be required to handle people’s money and possessions. Our aim is to help people to be included in the process as much as possible. We aim to ensure that we are open, honest, accountable and transparent in all transactions and to keep accurate records. We aim to include regular safety checks in procedures and irregularities or suspicions will be investigated immediately.
It is our aim to complete a full risk assessment on the service provision to include the handling of money and possessions. A person’s ability and comprehension of money handling will be considered, and any necessary control measures put into place for the protection of the client, the staff and the organisation.
We believe that it is an almost universal human wish to give ‘’thank you’’ presents to people we appreciate. We also believe that it is our duty to help clients live their lives as similar to other people as possible. Therefore, we do not ‘’ban’’ the giving of ‘’thank you’’ gifts but request that these remain a ‘’token thank you’’ that will be appreciated by the staff member but not make them uncomfortable due to its extravagance.
There will be occasions, when we don’t get everything right and we want to be the first to know about it so that we can investigate the matter immediately. In such a case, clients are encouraged to contact the Registered Manager in any way that they feel comfortable. This can be an informal complaint that can be investigated in a low-key manner and resolved easily.
If the complaint is of a graver nature the Registered Manager will acknowledge receipt within 7 days and will investigate and take appropriate action within 14 days.
If the client and/or their family members are not satisfied with the outcome they are advised to make an appeal to the Managing Director who will acknowledge receipt within 7 days and make a final decision within 14 days. If the client and/or their family members are still dissatisfied, they can complain to the local social services department or the CIW.
We may not always get everything right first time – but we will always want to put everything right!
If the complaint is of a serious nature then the commissioning service (if applicable), the Local Authority (Safeguarding of Vulnerable Adults) and the CIW will be informed.
Our office is at 13 High Street, Barry CF62 7EA. Office and office hours are 9.00 – 5.00 Monday to Friday. (Personal assessments are also generally undertaken between 9.00-5.00 Monday to Friday.) Contact out of hours in emergencies is via the on-call mobile (07742 405060).
The front room and a room upstairs are used as office space. Another room is available for meetings, and another for training and confidential consultation.
Parking is generally available outside or in nearby side streets.
The safety and health of all people are important for a successful service. The safer and healthier a person feels the more he or she will feel that they are gaining benefits from the service. If staff feel that they are safe and in good health, they will be more likely to perform to their potential. We as an agency will have fulfilled our legal requirement under employment law and our moral requirement as an agency built on human values and principles.
All staff will receive training in Health and Safety as part of their induction. The goal of this training is not to prevent people carrying out tasks because of a ‘risk’ but to equip them with the skills to identify how such a task can be carried out safely.
At the first meeting with a client a Team Leader will also carry out the first Safety Assessment. This will assess what threats there are to the client’s safety and to that of the staff – whether from people, equipment or buildings – and what steps can be taken to minimise or eradicate them. Since clients will often be vulnerable in many ways, this assessment will also assess the safety of property and belongings. Only if a service can be provided safely will it be offered.
We intend to ensure, to the best of our ability that the welfare of our staff is always considered by mentoring, supervising, training and managing staff in their role and to ensure they understand their need to ensure the safety of the client, themselves and the service at all times. Staff are provided with a mobile phone (with 24 hours on call support), a panic alarm, aprons, gloves and hand gel.
Address: 13 High Street
Tel No: 01446 741905
Address: Vale of Glamorgan Council
Tel No: 01446 700111
Address: Welsh Government Office Rhydycar Business Park Merthyr Tydfil CF48 1UZ
Tel No: 0300 7900 126