Hello everyone and welcome to my latest blog. 

It’s been a busy time in our lovely care homes.  Lots of activities have started up again, which is great to see. There have been further improvements and modifications, and we’ve been making sure we are in line with the CQC framework on compliance, which governs how we should operate. 

So, to break all that down a little… 

We have been preparing for summer fetes in all our homes. These are great to look forward to and without all the Covid restrictions which have put a dampener on our fete plans for the last couple of years. It’s a chance for residents to relax amongst loved ones and friends and enjoy the activities, hopefully under sunny skies! The first of these is at Hill House and takes place on Thursday 4th August. 

The last couple of weeks have seen some real extremes in weather conditions and some of our residents have commentated that they’ve never known such hot temperatures here in the UK. We all love to get out and about and enjoy our patio and garden areas, but we’ve had to be careful when those extremely hot days came in July. There were plenty of fluids available for residents and staff as it was important to keep everyone properly hydrated. I can also tell you that quite a few lollies and ice creams were enjoyed too! 

We’ve had some lovely days out down on the beach, more ice creams of course, plus local fish and chips and our own picnics to enjoy.  One thing you really notice is that after lockdown and all the Covid restrictions everyone really appreciates the outdoors, the fresh air and the sense of freedom. It does wonders for our residents’ health, mental and physical. 

Things have been particularly busy at our newest home Blackdown. We’ve had some new flooring laid down and it’s all part of a general plan to bring the home in line with a more contemporary look. We’ve installed a new ‘dessert fridge’ to expand the dining experience for our residents. It gives them more of a choice and the chance to choose what they fancy each day. We make sure we cater for all tastes and needs, including those with special dietary requirements. The feedback on this has been really positive. 

Talking of feedback… over the past couple of months we’ve been thrilled by the positive feedback we’ve received from residents and their loved ones from all three of our homes. It makes all the hard work worthwhile and I know our staff are always glad to receive praise for their efforts. Sometimes it’s just the simplest basic things that people really appreciate. Things we should never take for granted, like courtesy, respect, tolerance and manners. Together with their warm and kind nature it’s what makes our staff stand out, and it’s pleasing to see how appreciated it is. 

Visitors too have given positive feedback, and we’ve really noticed the increase in visitor numbers now that we finally have a few summer months without restrictions. We all know Covid hasn’t disappeared, and every now and again we have to deal with the odd case and outbreak like everywhere else does, but it’s all very controlled and quickly contained. 

In more general terms we always try and talk to our residents about how they feel about their home. And the key word here is ‘home’. How would they like things to look, what are their thoughts on décor and surroundings etc? It is, after all, their home, and listening and reflecting their wishes is very important to us. This is also in line with the CQC framework, especially when considering the ‘I Statements’ which are based on what residents need, want and expect. Additionally, there are the ‘We Statements’, based around a shared vision of leaders at all levels, highlighting clear responsibilities and encouraging continuous learning. The CQC framework on assessing compliance comes into place towards the end of this year and we want to make sure we are in alignment, and on track. 

So that’s about it for now. It’s holiday season for some, and I have a break due too.  I hope to get back to you again towards the end of August/beginning of September. 

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