Ipswich: Care home closes in wake of damning CQC inspections which revealed major hygiene issues

Fairfields House care home in Tuddenham Road in Ipswich has closed down.

Fairfields House care home in Tuddenham Road in Ipswich has closed down. - Credit: Sarah Lucy brown

An Ipswich care home has closed and a police investigation is under way after a damning inspection lifted the lid on a raft of hygiene problems at the site.

Commodes with dried waste inside them, a dirty kitchen and a lack of infection control measures were among the problems raised of Fairfields House care home, in Tuddenham Road, during visits from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) last year.

Two people were arrested on suspicion of neglect on Thursday in relation to the state of the home, which was subsequently closed by the proprietors on Friday, according to police.

Suffolk County Council workers were also called in to help relocate the home’s 10 residents on Friday.

A council spokesman said: “Our principal concern with the unexpected closure of Fairfields House care home was to ensure that the welfare of the residents was upheld, and that they were assisted with finding alternative living arrangements quickly, and with minimal stress and disruption.

“This was successful and the residents are now settling into their new accommodation.

“We have liaised with the local Jobcentre Plus Redundancy Support Team to inform them of the closure and redundancies, and have provided the now redundant staff opportunity to contact us for benefits advice.

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“We understand this is a very difficult time for those previously working at the home and we will continue to provide our support.”

The CQC visited the home on August 28 and September 11 last year.

Other examples given of poor hygiene standards given during these visits were bathrooms being dirty, no facilities for cleaning commodes and a lack of working facilities for “washing soiled laundry using safe infection control practices”.

It was also noted that there were fire safety concerns.

The inspectors also raised their concerns with health officers in Suffolk.

The report added: “The provider did not have an effective system in place to identify, assess and manage risks to the health, safety and welfare of people who used the service and others.”

A further CQC inspection was carried out on November 20 in response to separate concerns about the wellbeing of residents.

Inspectors said that these were unfounded but in a report, it was stated that concerns remained about hygiene issues at the home.

Last night a spokesman for Suffolk police confirmed that two people had been arrested on suspicion of neglect and that they had since been bailed.

A spokesman said: “Officers from Suffolk police arrested two people at an address in Westerfield on Thursday, January 30.

“A 55-year old man and 55-year-old woman, both from Westerfield, were arrested on suspicion of neglect (under the Mental Capacity Act and Mental Health Act).

“The pair were questioned in custody at the Martlesham Police Investigation Centre (PIC) and subsequently released on police bail. They will be required to return to the PIC on May 7, 2014.

“As part of this investigation, police have also carried out a search at business premises in Tuddenham Road, Ipswich and enquiries are ongoing.”

The Star attempted to contact the owners of the care home but we were told there was nobody available to comment.

It was confirmed, however, that the site was “no longer acting as a care home”.

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