Is this Lancashire's best care home? "Wonderful" Carnforth facility rated as Outstanding by watchdog CQC

This place has been described as "better than brilliant" by professionals.
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A Lancashire care home has achieved the best possible rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Keer Sands Residential Home in Crag Bank Road, Carnforth, near Lancaster, is officially Outstanding - and is one of only a handful of care facilities in the county to able to say so.

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The results of an unannounced inspection have just been released, and the home, which caters for up to 10 people at a time, has seen its rating improve from Good. Inspectors said moving to Outstanding "meant people were truly respected and valued as individuals; and empowered as partners in their care in an exceptional service."

Health professionals who work with the family-run home were said to be "very passionate" about complimenting the service and the approach of the managers and staff. One said: "[Staff] are phenomenal. Amazing, just amazing. Better than brilliant."

Staff at Keer Sands celebrating their success.Staff at Keer Sands celebrating their success.
Staff at Keer Sands celebrating their success.

What did the report say?

Here's some highlights of what inspectors said:

- "Staff worked tirelessly to provide the best experience". One resident was given a book by a family member, but they didn't want to read it. A staff member took the book home and read it in their own time so that they could tell the resident what it was about. This meant the resident could talk to their family about it and not disappoint them.

- "The registered managers were supportive of people to the very end of their lives." When people were nearing the end of their life, the registered managers ensured staff were always with the person so they could be reassured at any moment and know they were not alone. Extra staff were brought in to facilitate this, if necessary.

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- "People received extra support to stay in close contact with family both near and far." A person in the home had family in another country and hadn't seen them in years. The registered manager worked with the family to set up video conferences on a new electronic tablet the family had purchased.

- Staff were very attentive. A new person was thought to be non-verbal, but was given a pen by the managher and they started to write. Nobody was aware they could do this. This progressed to the use of wipe-off boards and pens. Now that person now talks and is fully engaged in their own care.

- The registered managers run the home "exceptionally well". They are open to new ideas and available.

- Staff training was current and well managed. - People and their relatives confirmed to inspectors that they felt safe. One person told said: "I can recommend it to anyone. Have no fears about this place, it's wonderful."

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- "People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests."

Keer Sands in CarnforthKeer Sands in Carnforth
Keer Sands in Carnforth

What does the home say?

Registered manager Victoria Stephens said: "We are absolutely over the moon with our CQC outstanding rating, however it’s things we do without knowing we are actually doing them, that has got us here."

She added: "We care for your residents like they are family in a homely atmosphere. We have excellent communications and relationships with not only our residents, but their family and friends too, which ensures the care we provide meets their individual and person centred needs."

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