A nursing home in West Sussex that is part of a police and local authority investigation into safeguarding allegations has been placed in special measures by the CQC.
Rapkyns Nursing Home, which was rated Inadequate following an inspection in June, is one of a number of Sussex Health Care (SHC) services being investigated following the deaths of people between April 2015 and June 2017.
Amanda Stride, CQC’s Head of Inspection of Adult Social Care, said: “I am extremely disappointed in reading the findings of this report and concerned on behalf of the people the home is supposed to be caring for.
“Our inspectors will return to Rapkyns Nursing Home in due course to see what improvements have been made. If we do not see significant improvement we will not hesitate to take further action to protect people using the service – even if this means removing the registration of the home.
“Our first priority is always the welfare of the people who are living at the service. We will continue to monitor Rapkyns Nursing Home and work with the statutory agencies to make sure that people living there are safe and receive care which meets their needs.”
The service, which provides nursing and personal care for up to 60 people living with a learning disability, physical disability or complex health condition, provides accommodation in the Rapkyns Nursing Home and smaller Sycamore Lodge.
The latest CQC inspection was limited to Sycamore Lodge, which provides residential care and support for up to 10 people with a learning disability and/or autism with some challenging behaviours, as Rapkyns Nursing Home was empty.
In its findings, the CQC said there was a lack of clear guidance on supporting people with epilepsy and inspectors observed people being spoken to in a childlike manner with their dignity not always upheld. Inspectors commented on staff using inappropriate language and speaking about personal issues in front of residents. The CQC added that people found their care plans difficult to understand and could not take part in reviewing them.
An SHC spokesperson said: “Providing our residents and their families with the highest levels of care and support is our priority. As such, we are disappointed by the CQC’s latest report. We have taken on board the CQC’s findings and are putting in place a series of measures to strengthen and enhance the service we provide to those we look after.
“We continue to work closely and constructively with the CQC to ensure we are delivering the best quality care for the local community.”