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'Inadequate' care agency placed into special measures

Lean On Me Community Care Services Ltd, which provides at-home carers for clients in Ealing, Hayes and Hounslow, faces possible closure if it fails to improve

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A care agency based in Northolt has been placed into special measures and faces possible closure if it fails to make urgent improvements.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated Lean On Me Community Care Services Ltd, the registered provider of Lean on Me Northolt, in Ruislip Road, as 'inadequate' following a surprise two-day inspection in April.

At the time of the inspection, the company provided at-home carers for 97 people, most of them elderly. Most of the company's clients live in Ealing, but it also has others in Hayes and Hounslow.

In a report, published on Wednesday (May 20), the CQC said the company was failing to provide care that was safe, caring, responsive to users' needs or well-led.

Inspectors found that the company had breached several regulations, including by not telling the CQC about safeguarding incidents.

They also said care workers did not follow the company’s own policy on supporting people with their medicines, and that they sometimes referred to service-users disrespectfully in their notes.

The report further noted that not all of the improvements demanded by the CQC after its last inspection had been made in the eight-month interim.

The company will be inspected again within the next six months. If it is found not to have made the required improvements the CQC will “move to close the service”, the report said.

Sally Warren, the CQC’s deputy chief inspector of adult social care, said: “It is essential that Lean On Me Community Care Services Ltd takes action to address the concerns we identified at this inspection.

“The provider has a responsibility to ensure that all of its clients are safe and protected from the risk of harm.

“All people using services from Lean On Me Community Care Services Ltd have a right to receive care which is of a high quality, compassionate and safe.”

The report noted that the company's clients felt well cared for and were happy with the service they received, adding that the overall service was effective.

Manager Christian Eyong said he felt the CQC's rating was unfair, but accepted that there were "some shortcomings", adding that improvements were being made.

He said: “I don't think that the inspection, per se, I don't think it's a reflection of what we do. I don't think it's a reflection of where we are as an agency, providing health and social care services.”

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