The highs, lows and future at Augusta Care

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This is an official update on the latest news regarding the CQC inspection and how it affects team members and service users.

About the CQC inspection

The CQC inspection involves an assessment from an independent compliance officer from the Care Quality Commission. The recent inspection assessed a range of regulatory standards which included:

  1. Respecting and involving people who use our services
  2. Care and welfare of people who use our services
  3. Cooperating with other providers
  4. Management of medicines
  5. Supporting workers
  6. Assessing and monitoring the quality of service users

Whilst we are successfully achieving the majority of these regulatory standards, the inspection highlighted that we need to make improvements in supporting workers. We need to carry out more supervisions and performance reviews and become more consistent in how our team reports safeguarding issues that may arise. 

Understanding supervisions and performance reviews

A supervision is a learning and development opportunity for staff at all levels. During a supervision, staff can discuss training requirements, look at different ways of working and discuss any specific issues they may have. Each member of staff should receive six supervisions a year. A performance review looks at an individual's job description, assesses the team member and highlights any opportunities for improvement together with the resources required to make those improvements. Each member of staff should receive one performance review every year. Supervisions and performance reviews provide an important opportunity for assessment, discussion and feedback which help to maintain the high standards we strive for. 

Regulatory standards and the Investors in People award

Unfortunately, we won't achieve the Investors in People award if we are not achieving all regulatory standards and working as effectively as we may have thought with our people. As a result the Investors in People assessment will take place in September after we have had a chance to make necessary improvements. This calls for prompt action and the Improvement Action Plan outlined below details how we plan to tackle things. 

The Improvement Action Plan

Tara Currie, Senior Agency Manager has already written an Improvement Action Plan. Tara is going to be working very closely alongside team leaders and managers to monitor the required improvements so you can expect more supervisions, more visits and more time with your managers. The plan details the actions, the steps that need to be completed, who is responsible for each action, when will action will be completed and what the desired outcome is. These include:

1. Regular supervisions and performance reviews to be carried outEach member of staff will receive the expected six supervisions and one performance review a year. This will include regular visits from team managers when you are working out in the community. If you have joined us in the last six months you can expect a review of your performance every six weeks until you have been with us six months, from which a yearly performance review will follow. 

2. A review of roles and responsibilities that will enable us to achieve the above 
We have actively listened to our staff, service users and partners (CQC inspection). We need to monitor our organisation more closely.  There will be more opportunities for support workers to speak with their managers. 

We regularly review the structure of the organisation because we are passionate about what we do. If a structure is not working for whatever reasons have evolved then we will look at what we can change in order to adapt and stay ahead of the game. With this new awareness we believe we can significantly improve quality standards by enabling managers to visit staff in the field more regularly and with a stronger leadership team.

As roles, responsibilities and processes change its really important for individuals within the organisation to fit in. So if you are unsure where you fit in then talk to us. Use your up and coming supervision to communicate any questions or concerns you may have or get in touch with Suzanne or Tara directly. 

In addition, Agency Manager, Laura Lloyd will now be working more flexibly as she prepares to go on maternity leave. Team Leader, Chris Graham is now Acting Team Manager and is working closely with Laura Cairney during. Tara is supporting and mentoring Chris and Laura within their roles. 

3. Ongoing training, development and assessment
We will become more consistent in how our team operates through better monitoring, performance reviews and ongoing training, development and assessment. Our training programme leads the way and this standard is set to continue. In addition regular assessments are required to ensure staff are applying their knowledge and carrying out tasks as expected. 

4. A full audit will take place on 2nd and 3rd of July 2014
Director, Suzanne Hollingworth and Senior Agency Manager, Tara Currie will be carrying out a detailed full service audit in July. They will be visit all locations, meet and greet staff and get your views and feedback. This will give us the opportunity to monitor our progress and provide two way communication and feedback.  

Conclusion
So, let's not be negatively affected by recent events. Instead let's accept that we need to make improvements and use this learning opportunity positively. There has already been a significant amount of work done and a lot more is being actioned. The next few weeks and months will involve a series of assessment and measurement criteria to ensure we achieve the important changes we need to make. We see these curve balls as challenges and opportunities for the organisation to evolve effectively. We would like to ensure that we use this as an opportunity to become more proactive rather than reactive, to monitor ourselves much more closely than we have been and to encourage all members of the team to readily change behaviours and approaches when necessary. The outcomes should result in improved jobs satisfaction, higher performing team members and therefore, happier Service Users. 

Get involved and share your views
Do you have any suggestions about what we can do differently to ensure we maintain high quality standards? What do you think about the Improvement Action Plan? Let us know by sharing your comments below.