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Council vows to tackle underperforming care providers

care home nurse

Norfolk County Council is set to introduce a series of measures aimed at improving care quality.

There are currently 15 ‘inadequate’ rated care homes in county, or 3% of the total number, with another 85 (18%) having been told to improve by the CQC, according to the Eastern Daily Press.

Councillor Bill Borrett, cabinet member for adult social care, public health and prevention, said: “We rely on the private and voluntary sector to provide most of our care and it is crucial that standards are maintained and that their businesses are sustainable.

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“The council continues to monitor the situation and is proposing a series of practical measures to support the care market.”

The council is set to approve the measures designed to raise care quality at a meeting on August 5.

The local authority (LA) spends £328m annual on social care for 17,000 adults and introduced above inflation fee increases for providers last year.

However, the sector continues to suffer from high staff turnover and lost 173 care home beds, 12 care home providers and five home care providers in the last year. The council cancelled a contract with an Akari Care home it described as “chaotic” in June.

Concerns reported to the council about care homes almost doubled in a six-month period over 2018/19 to 488, compared with 258 in the year earlier period.

The council said care providers were now expected to achieve ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ within six months of being told to improve.

The council’s plans include a proactive inspection regime, £8m in European funding to tackle recruitment issues through a joint bid with Suffolk Council, establishing a care association and increasing supported living provision.

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The author Lee Peart

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