One in five care homes underperforming, study finds

One in five care homes in England are rated Requires Improvement or Inadequate although their total number has declined, new analysis highlights.

The Independent Age study on CQC data also found that the number of homes rated Good or Outstanding has increased as of January 2018.

The study shows that the number of homes rated Requires Improvement or Inadequate has fallen in 114 local authorities. However, 33 local authorities, or one in five, have seen a rise in poor quality homes.

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On a regional level, London has seen an overall decline in underperforming homes from 20.3% to 17.4%, however, 10 of its local authorities saw a rise.

Independent Age said each region of the country had seen at least one local authority with an increase in Requires Improvement and Inadequate homes.

While highlighting that five local authorities saw an improvement in overall quality but still had 40% of services rated Requires Improvement or Inadequate, the report states: “This shows that while improvements year on year are positive and show some local authorities to be on the right path, there remains a lot of work to be done to ensure care home residents have access to good quality care: something Independent Age believes must be available to everyone.”

Janet Morrison, CEO of Independent Age, commented: “Older people and their families are still facing an unenviable choice between poor care homes in some parts of the country.”

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, added: “This study sadly reflects the consequences of the social care funding crisis and is further evidence of the ever more pressing need to adequately fund adult social care for both the immediate and long-term.

“The stark reality is that the quality and choice of care homes will likely get worse, unless immediate action is taken to tackle social care underfunding and implement long-term reform of the sector.”

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