Probe at Bupa home after resident care complaints

Bupa's Victoria Manor home in Albert Street
Bupa's Victoria Manor home in Albert Street
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A BUPA nursing home is under scrutiny from the Care Inspectorate after a string of complaints about residents’ care and staffing levels.

The watchdog rated Victoria Manor in Albert Street, just off Easter Road, “weak” in all four of its inspection areas when staff made a surprise visit in December last year.

Since then, seven complaints about the home have been upheld, in areas including staff levels, continence care, infection control and record keeping.

The Care Inspectorate says it is monitoring the home “very closely” and is working with Bupa to improve the situation.

The December inspection was a follow-up to a visit paid by inspectorate staff in August, carried out to check that identified problems had been solved.

But it found that “many of the same issues remained, and further deterioration was noted in certain areas”. Inspectors acknowledged that staff were kind and considerate, but they said there were often not enough of them to provide adequate care for residents.

In the home’s Balmoral section, inspectors saw one resident with poor short-term memory crying out for help for half an hour.

Although her care plan had specified that staff should take time to sit and talk with her when she was anxious, inspectors wrote: “We saw that the resident constantly called out for staff support and reassurance over a period of 30 minutes with no staff intervention as described in the care plan.”

During the 30-minute period, “she was ignored and remained distressed,” they noted.

Inspectors said that having one member of staff on duty in the lounge was not sufficient. They also noticed hygiene problems, with “several examples of staff practice which could have compromised residents’ safety”.

Among these was the fact that no handwashing was offered before meals, there were dirty soap dishes, hairbrushes and cosmetics baskets, and items such as “bumpers” used to cover bed rails were being stored in en-suite bathrooms.

Records suggested that one resident had not been bathed for three weeks, while another implied that a resident who should have been helped to change her position every two hours had been left in the same position overnight.

A spokeswoman at the Care Inspectorate said it was working with Bupa in the wake of the inspection.

She said: “The Care Inspectorate has identified certain key areas for Victoria Manor that need to be improved, and we are working closely with the provider to ensure that these improvements are made. We will continue to monitor this service very closely and report our findings.”

Kenny Valentine, Bupa care services director for Scotland, said: “We are pleased the report praised staff for their kind and considerate approach to residents’ individual needs, but we also acknowledge that it highlighted areas where we need to improve our service further. Senior management are working with the new home manager and her team in order to achieve the required improvements.”