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Ipswich supported housing project is praised for ‘exceptional standards’

PUBLISHED: 15:00 26 May 2018

The Norwich Road complex run by Consensus has gone from 'requires improvement' to 'outstanding' in just two inspections from the CQC Picture: GREGG BROWN

The Norwich Road complex run by Consensus has gone from 'requires improvement' to 'outstanding' in just two inspections from the CQC Picture: GREGG BROWN

An Ipswich-based community supported living service has received the highest rating from inspectors just two years after they raised serious concerns about its work.

Manager Shayne Mills Picture: GREGG BROWNManager Shayne Mills Picture: GREGG BROWN

The service run by Consensus in Norwich Road has been graded as ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission.

In 2016 when it was based in Colchester it was rated by the CQC as “requries improvement’.

Jemima Burnage, CQC’s head of inspection for adult social care in the central region, said: “During our inspection of Norwich Road, we found exceptional standards of care. We saw positive and caring interactions between staff and the people supported by the service and found that people were treated with kindness and respect.

“People were able to express their views and staff listened to what they said, respected their views and took action to ensure their decisions were acted on.

The project in Norwich Road Picture: GREGG BROWNThe project in Norwich Road Picture: GREGG BROWN

“Staff protected people’s privacy and dignity and people and their relatives told us they felt safe in the service. People were protected from bullying, harassment, avoidable harm and abuse by staff who knew how to report any incidents they witnessed or suspected.”

Andrea Sutcliffe, chief inspector of adult social care, said: “The quality of care which our inspectors found here was exceptional and I am very pleased that we can celebrate the service’s achievements. An outstanding service is the result of a tremendous amount of hard work and commitment.”

Norwich Road, supports adults with learning disabilities and a range of complex needs in a complex of four flats and two bungalows.

Registered manager Shayne Mills said: “I am really thrilled with the outcome as it recognises not only all the effort the team puts in, but also reflects the high quality of care and support provided across the service, and more importantly the outcomes achieved by individuals supported by the team at Norwich Road. However, we will not become complacent, and will continue to improve the service and ensure we maintain the high standard of care and support.”

James Allen, maanaging director of Consensus, said: “I am delighted and very proud of the terrific achievement of our supported living services in Ipswich. The “outstanding” rating from CQC is the result of a great deal of hard work and commitment by Shayne and so many others within the team. Everybody at Consensus is particularly pleased that CQC commended the team for the compassion and kindness shown to the individuals supported – we believe this is an essential part of what we do.

“As Shayne says it is important we celebrate this outcome but that we do not become complacent in this or any of our other services across the UK.”

The CQC inspection focuses on five key areas and examines whether the service is safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. The Consensus service was rated as ‘Outstanding’ overall, with individual ratings of Outstanding for being well-led, caring and responsive and a ‘Good’ rating for being safe and effective. January’s inspection involved inspectors talking to five people who are supported by the service, three people’s relatives, five members of the team and the registered manager, the head of strategy and operations and the operations manager, in addition to reviewing records and liaising with health and social care commissioners and professionals.

The report was extremely positive and highlighted that, without exception, there was a person-centred approach to everything the service offered and how it was run, being described as outstandingly well-led.

Norwich Road spend a lot of time making sure supported individuals are matched with their preferred support worker who can best encourage a happy life that offers opportunity, choice and success whilst meeting their very individual and unique needs. The CQC report recognised this and commended the service for their innovative and dynamic recruitment process, robust policies and procedures, and their excellent commitment without exception to providing outstanding care which was embedded into the practices of the staff and registered manager.

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EADT writer David Vincent has more than 40 years experience in Suffolk. He has explored the highways and byeways of East Anglia, meeting homeowners, developers and estate agents from Bury St Edmunds to Aldeburgh and Colchester to Diss.

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