• Four Seasons Health Care saved from collapse after deal with creditors

    Uncertainty for 17,000 care home residents ended after troubled firm strikes debt holiday deal with private equity investorsA deal has been agreed to stave off the collapse of , which looks after 17,000 elderly and vulnerable people, after the company’s largest creditor agreed to drop several conditions.Four Seasons had warned it might not honour a £26m debt payment due by Friday, raising fears the firm could become the largest care home operator to fall into administration since Sou
  • Four Seasons Health Care earns reprieve after deal with creditors

    Uncertainty for 17,000 care home residents ended temporarily after troubled firm strikes debt holiday deal with private equity investorsA deal has been agreed to stave off the collapse of Four Seasons Health Care, which looks after 17,000 elderly and vulnerable people, after the company’s largest creditor agreed to drop several conditions.Four Seasons had warned it might not honour a £26m debt payment due by Friday, raising fears the firm could become the largest care home operator t
  • Search is on for for pioneering Dementia carers centre

    Bruton Knowles has been instructed to find a home for a circa 18,000 sq ft multi-million pound flagship Dementia Carers Centre in Birmingham described as the first of its kind in the world.
    The centre will provide education, training and skills development for people who care for relatives with dementia. The hotel-style facility will also provide social and therapeutic support.
    The Royal Surgical Aid Society (RSAS), a charity that supports dementia carers, is investing £4m in the project.
  • Kingdom Homes hosts annual care staff awards

    Kingdom Homes, who have 10 care homes throughout Fife, recently held their annual Staff Awards evening in a local hotel. Over 100 staff were present to celebrate the achievements of Kingdom Homes employees over the past 12 months.
     The “Employee of the Year” were voted for by residents, relatives and their fellow colleagues. The three finalists in each category were invited to the Awards with the winner announced on the evening.
     Long Service Awards for those marking 1
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  • Ormskirk care staff have an Elf of a day for dementia charity

    From the youngest to the oldest, Stocks Hall, Ormskirk’s Home, Santa and his team, worked very hard raising money for charity recently.  Elf Day held on Friday 8th December encourages schools, colleges and other organisation to unleash their inner Elf and fundraise for the Alzheimer’s Society.
    The team of ……not so little elves, worked around the clock to ensure all their work was completed for Santa’s approval.  Santa flew in to say hello at their e
  • New figures from Age UK show our social care system is disintegrating

    New figures from Age UK reveal the vast numbers of older carers being left to fill the gap as our social care system crumbles Older carers now providing nearly 54 million hours of care a week in England
    New figures from Age UK reveal the shocking extent to which millions of older people are being left to prop up the country’s disintegrating care system, with those aged 65 and over providing nearly 54 million hours of unpaid care each week in England in 2016[i].
    These figures highlight the
  • Sanctuary Care staff wow in this year’s Christmas Cake Competition

    The culinary creativity of Sanctuary Care staff has once again wowed the judges in this year’s Christmas Cake Competition.
    Now in its 10th year, the contest tasks staff from Sanctuary Care’s homes across the country to make a traditional fruit Christmas cake, iced to their own unique design. The cakes are carefully transported to its Worcester offices, where they are sampled by a panel of judges.
    The winning creation was a stunning scene with Santa, sat at a beautifully dressed table
  • Outlook Care’s domiciliary services across London found ‘Outstanding’ by CQC

    A leading regional health and social care provider is celebrating after achieving a top rating following an inspection by a government watchdog.
    The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has rated leadership of Outlook Care’s domiciliary services across London as ‘Outstanding’.
     
    Headquartered in Billericay, Essex, the not-for-profit organisation, which operates in London and Essex, provides domiciliary services to around 150 people with learning disabilities in supported living s
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  • Care provider and entrepreneur finalist at 12th Scottish Asian Business Awards

     
    Serial entrepreneur, Arti Poddar, is a finalist in the Entrepreneur/Investor of the year category at the 12th Scottish Asian Business Awards 2017 to be held today, 14th of December at the Crowne Plaza in Glasgow.
     
    The Awards, which have been celebrated annually since 2006 recognise Scotland’s top Asian achievers and cover every aspect of business life. 
    Already a winner of Young Achiever of the year at the first ever Scottish Asian Business Awards and more recently B
  • Sunrise of Eastbourne’s Memory Care Co-ordinator wins National Care Award

    Sunrise of Eastbourne’s Memory Care Co-ordinator, Nancy Ivison, has won a prestigious National Care Award, after beating off stiff competition for the Resident Engagement prize.
    Nancy won the award for her work to improve care quality at Sunrise of Eastbourne, support for people living with dementia, and the way in which she discusses needs and priorities with residents, making beneficial changes as a result of their feedback.
    Judges praised Nancy for being “incredibly humble, and te
  • MHA’s music therapy to be showcased on BBC Radio 4

    Paul Mosby (left) with music therapist Michael Angus
    MHA’s music therapy service for residents living with dementia will be showcased on BBC Radio 4’s The Untold when it follows the story of a resident at Torrwood care home in Wells, Somerset. 
    The half-hour documentary, due to be broadcast on Monday 18 December at 11am, features resident Paul Mosby, along with wife Yvonne and daughter Helen. 
    Paul (87) has been receiving one-to-one music therapy with music therapist Michae
  • Bournemouth care home emphasises the importance of activities for residents’ wellbeing

    Great Oaks, a specialist residential, nursing and dementia care home in Bournemouth hosted a festive family-friendly open day as part of its on-going strategy to strengthen its links with the local community. 
    Great Oaks’ care programme consists of daily activities and events which are carefully planned by the dedicated activities manager, who works hard to ensure that a variety of engaging activities are organised for residents to be involved with. Significant importance is put on th
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  • Christmas cheer is in the air at Watling Court Extra Care Housing Scheme

    Christmas cheer was in the air at Watling Court Extra Care Housing Scheme last week, when tenants got together to put their Christmas decorations up.
     
    Tenants of the Ifield Way housing scheme gathered together in the dining room to enjoy their annual festive activity of putting up the scheme’s many trees and decorations.
     
    Whilst enjoying a cup of tea and tucking into a mince pie and some Christmas treats, the tenants all got stuck in and worked together to turn the scheme into
  • It’s normal to grieve: how social care professionals cope with death

    Staff can feel mixed emotions, including guilt, when they are confronted by death in the course of their work. It is vital they get the support they need
    Social worker Jane* will never forget the day a mother she was supporting killed her baby.“I wasn’t responsible for the child but I was working with the mother,” she explains. “We had got to the point where we were just about to take the child into care, but the mother said, ‘If I can’t have her then nobody c
  • Barnsley care home bridges the generation gap

    THE GENERATION gap has been bridged in Barnsley as young and old become pen pals.
     
    More than 20 letters have been flying back and forth between the residents of Deangate Care Home and pupils of Darton Primary School.
     
    The Year 3 pupils have been introducing themselves, including details of their favourite foods, colours and pets in their handwritten letters and asking questions.
     
    The care home residents were delighted to receive the post and have been writing back, responding w
  • Children’s social care is improving – but there is more to do | Eleanor Schooling

    More than a third of services are good or outstanding, but the standard of care in young offender institutions and secure training centres is a cause for concern
    Too often, news about the state of children’s social care makes for worrying reading. The sector is beset by many challenges, and usually only makes the headlines when things go wrong.
    Ofsted has been clear about what needs to improve in local authorities’ children’s services departments and, as we set out in our annua
  • Healthcare Homes celebrate good result for Bristol care home

    A nursing care home in Bristol that supports individuals who live with dementia has achieved an across-the-board rating of ‘Good’, following its latest inspection by the healthcare regulator, CQC.
    Avon Lodge Care Home in Kingswood caters for elder residents, those with dementia needs, and for young adults.
    Part of the Healthcare Homes Group, the home was inspected in a formal unannounced visit in the late summer, and was notified this week that it had achieved its ‘Good’
  • How CPD has changed over the years, but in a good way- Skills for Care blog

    The end of October marked my three year anniversary at Skills for Care. As you might expect, Skills for Care is pretty proactive in supporting continued professional development (CPD), so it’s been a very busy three years, but I’ve been fortunate to work for other organisations keen to support staff development.
    Let’s jump back a few years to when I worked in supported housing. Although it wasn’t that long ago, the world of learning and development seemed very different t
  • The state of social care shames us all

    Care homes are unfairly relying on better-off residents to subsidise others’ care. The government urgently needs to increase funding to the sectorWhy are people on the left so exercised about how we pay for social care? After all, better-off care home residents who pay their own way are each quietly subsidising to the tune of £12,000 a year those with fewer assets who are funded by councils that negotiate lower fees. What could be more socialist?The truth is that this is an unofficia
  • Chorley concert hits the high notes with dementia residents

    Residents at an award-winning specialist care home in Chorley enjoyed a festive musical treat performed as part of a wider wellbeing programme.
     
    The Lodge, a specialist dementia care home within Buckshaw Retirement Village, played host to the Christmas music concert, which was performed by Music in Hospitals & Care (MiHC). The organisation specialises in performing to people with all kinds of healthcare needs, including those with dementia and disabilities. 
    The charity, which has
  • ADASS points out the need to plug social care funding gap

    Responding to analysis by the Alzheimer’s Society which shows 1,400 people with dementia will be stranded in hospital over Christmas, Margaret Willcox, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), said:
    “This welcome report is further evidence of the urgent need to plug the estimated £2.5 billion funding gap facing adult social care up to 2020, which is impacting now on thousands of people in need of reliable, personal care, including those with d
  • Independent Care Group comments on shocking Alzheimer’s Society investigation

    The plight of 1,400 people with dementia who are stranded in hospital this Christmas because of a lack of available social care to look after them was today condemned as a disgrace.The Independent Care Group said the investigation by Alzheimer’s Society had uncovered a situation which shamed the country and was totally unacceptable in 2017.The Society today reports that at least 1,400 people look set to spend Christmas in hospital because the social care system is so starved of funding it
  • Horrifying figures as 1,400 people with dementia expected to be stranded in hospital over Christmas

    1 in 10 nurses surveyed have seen people with dementia waiting over a year in hospital
    Alzheimer’s Society investigation reveals horrifying figures as 1,400 people with dementia expected to be stranded in hospital over Christmas
    At least 1,400 vulnerable people will spend Christmas on a hospital ward – well enough to go home, but trapped because of a social care system starved of funding – an Alzheimer’s Society investigation has revealed. 
    Alzheimer’s Soc
  • ITV film reveals serious failings at UK children’s homes

    Undercover reporters found evidence of understaffing, inadequate training and closure of homes before Ofsted inspection among other issuesSome of the most vulnerable “looked after” children in the country are being failed by privately owned residential homes that are contracted to care for them, it has been claimed. Undercover reporters secured jobs as care staff at residential homes in Shropshire run by the two largest commercial providers of care for looked-after children: Cambian
  • Westfield sale looks like a knee-jerk reaction to the Amazon age | Nils Pratley

    The rush to consolidate by owners of large shopping centres suggests they are seeking protection from the rise of online rivalsThe crisis of confidence among owners of large shopping centres is contagious. Last week it was Hammerson, the Birmingham Bullring folk, bidding for Intu, owner of Gateshead’s Metrocentre. Now, on grander scale, French giant Unibail-Rodamco is paying $25bn (£18.5bn) to own Westfield, the Australian outfit that has erected its multistorey car parks, with malls
  • Clare in the community: Secret Santa babies

    Clare and the team pick their gifts with care Continue reading...
  • A shocking way to fund UK care homes | Nils Pratley

    The Four Seasons Health Care crisis is mainly down to financial engineering gone wrong. Have we learned nothing?Why is Four Seasons Health Care, the country’s largest care homes operator, in financial difficulty? Why is the regulator, the Care Quality Commission, having to prod and cajole creditors to agree a standstill on debt repayments to prevent the business falling into administration? Why is this crisis happening only six years after the failure of Southern Cross, which at the time w
  • New £15m care home in Chester nears completion creating 70 care jobs

    Work continues apace on a state-of-the-art new £15m care home in Chester, which is now just three months away from completion.
     
    Build is well over half way at the ‘new generation’ 81-bed care facility on Heath Lane.  The external brickwork and roof tiling are complete meaning the building is now watertight, and the 30 plus contractors and tradesmen on site are working hard on the interior to ensure the development remains ahead of schedule and ready for its planned o
  • Claim money towards developing your employees in adult social care

    You could claim money towards developing your employees
    If you’re an adult social care employer in England, you can claim the Workforce Development Fund (WDF) towards the costs of your employees completing adult social care qualifications, units and learning programmes.
    If you’d prefer to read our leaflet, you can download it here.
    If you are a learning provider, large national organisation (1000+ employees) or an employer led partnership, please visit the appropriate page. 
  • Operations Manager celebrates seven years at one of Kent’s leading home care providers

    Clare Mortlock, Operations Manager at one of Kent’s leading home care providers, Bluebird Care, has celebrated her seven year anniversary with the company. Clare has worked in the care sector for 16 years and joined the company in 2010.  
     
    As Operations Manager, Clare works alongside franchise director to develop and implement the business strategy for Bluebird Care’s offices in Maidstone, Dartford and Gravesham, and Tonbridge and Tunbri
  • End of life care award goes to MHA at 3rd Sector Awards

    MHA’s Chaplaincy team has been awarded the 3rd Sector Care award for its work on end of life care. 
     
    The charity’s approach to end of life care is encapsulated in its specially-designed programme called The Final Lap which aims to make sure all its care homes are places where death and dying are faced openly, positively and with support.
     
    The programme was implemented long before various Government initiatives to improve end of life care. MHA’s approach and res
  • Film depicts reality for young parents at risk of having a child taken into care

    Animation by Just for Kids Law aims to prompt social workers to consider the frustrations and fears of legal proceedings from the young person’s perspective “When you’re in care, having a baby is like walking through a door. On the other side, you’re not a kid who can ask for help any more; you’re an unfit mum getting ready to do what’s expected of you – fail.”
    For Elise and Jocasta*, this line in a new animated film by children’s advocacy ch
  • Priest jailed for child abuse images lived on scandal-hit Caldey Island

    Exclusive: revelations mean that four men convicted or accused of sexual offences against children lived or stayed on tiny monastic Welsh islandA priest who was jailed for downloading hundreds of pictures of child sexual abuse is the latest offender to be identified as having close links with the monastic island of Caldey, which is at the centre of a growing scandal. Father John Shannon, who was subsequently caught on the mainland with pictures of children as young as nine, lived on the island o
  • Christmas Market comes to Glasgow care home

    With Christmas markets a firm festive favourite, a care home in Glasgow has found a novel way to make sure that residents don’t miss out, by setting up a market inside the home.
     
    Staff at the Bupa Highgate care home will be hosting a pop-up Christmas market on December 8. Ensuring there is something for everyone, the market will have a range of stalls including those selling gifts and cakes, and a stall selling food and drink run by the kitchen staff. There will also be a raffle and
  • Regard MD included in the 2017 list of ‘100 Women To Watch’

    Carole Edmond, managing director of the Regard Group – the UK’s fourth biggest private provider of supported living and specialist residential services for people with learning disabilities, mental health needs and acquired brain injury – has been included in the 2017 list of ‘100 Women To Watch,’ Cranfield School of Management’s annual showcase for top female achievers in the UK. 
    The list features outstanding female leaders drawn from a broad range
  • New to the care sector buyers snap up Staffordshire care home

    DC Care has recently completed the sale of Summerfields Care Home in Branston, close to Burton on Trent in Staffordshire on behalf of their client, Mrs Annette Gilliland. The new owners are Mr and Mrs Patel; first time buyers who are venturing into healthcare, with support and mentoring from a close friend who is already an operator. Bank funding was dependent upon the more experienced party becoming an equity partner in the care home. Chris Field of Christ and Co Finance, who sourced the fundin
  • A shocking way to fund UK care homes

    The Four Seasons Health Care crisis is mainly down to financial engineering gone wrong. Have we learned nothing from the Southern Cross debacle?Why is Four Seasons Health Care, the country’s largest care homes operator, in financial difficulty? Why is the regulator, the Care Quality Commission, having to prod and cajole creditors to agree a standstill on debt repayments to prevent the business falling into administration? Why is this crisis happening only six years after the failure of Sou
  • Personalized blood sugar goals can save diabetes patients thousands

    A cost analysis shows treatment plans that set individualized blood sugar goals for diabetes patients, tailored to their age and health history, can save $13,546 in health care costs over their average lifetime when compared with treatment strategies that stick to a uniform national standard.
  • Alzheimer’s Society comments on study which suggests urea is a cause of dementia

    A study published today (11 December) has suggested that a build-up of urea in the brain could be a major cause of dementia. An international team of researchers, including Professor Garth Cooper from the University of Manchester, used both human brains, donated by families for medical research, and those of genetically modified sheep to investigate whether Huntington’s disease is directly linked to brain urea levels. This builds upon earlier research into Alzheimer’s disease and ure
  • Managing concerning behaviors when opioids are taken for chronic pain

    Patients receiving long-term opioid therapy for chronic pain sometimes demonstrate challenging and concerning behaviors, such as using more opioid medication than prescribed or concomitant alcohol or drug use. A new study establishes expert consensus about treatment approaches that should be implemented when these behaviors arise.
  • High-intensity exercise delays Parkinson's progression

    High-intensity exercise three times a week is safe for individuals with early-stage Parkinson’s disease and decreases worsening of motor symptoms, according to a new phase 2, multi-site trial.
  • Slap-up Christmas celebration for care home residents

    CHRISTMAS came early for Ingleby Barwick’s elderly as a community group took them for festive pub lunch.
     
    The Ingleby Barwick Community Partnership paid for residents of Ingleby Care Home to enjoy a slap-up celebration at the Myton House Farm Pub.
     
    Alongside lunch of turkey with all the trimmings, the residents were treated to entertainment from the Salvation Army Band and singer Simon.
     
    Pupils from Winstone Primary School also attended to perform Christmas carols during
  • New Year, new qualifications framework information from Skills for Care

    I know we’ve only just got our heads around the move from NVQs to the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) but we will soon have to move with the times again and get used to the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF).
    The RQF will replace the QCF from 1 January 2018 but anyone who has enrolled to do a QCF qualification before this date can continue their study. I appreciate that if you are a social care employer or manager you already have a lot on your plate so we aim to provide yo
  • Veterans and toddlers share the real meaning of Christmas with festive fun!

    With Christmas just around the corner, disabled veterans at The Royal Star & Garter Homes welcomed babies and toddlers to a fun-filled, Christmas themed multi-sensory class held at the Charity’s Solihull Home. Residents were invited to join in the festive fun alongside the youngsters. The class was run by Hartbeeps, as part of an ongoing partnership between the Solihull Home and the local group to help bring generations together.
     
    The class focussed on the fun and joy of the Chri
  • Scottish care homes’ Head Chef proves he’s the Crème de la Crème

    Congratulations to Oakbridge Care Homes’, Head Chef, Richard Pandelus on attaining the SVQ in Management at SCQF Level 9.
     
    The Scottish Vocational Qualification (SVQ) in Management at SCQF level 9 allows candidates to demonstrate competence in job-related skills in their particular area of work and expertise. It has been developed to support those working as middle managers.
     
    This qualification is jointly awarded with the Chartered Institute of Management (CIM).
     
    Richard
  • Community approach to social work delivers more personalised care

    Nine councils have adopted a new programme, which has led to a quicker response, better staff morale and budget savings Gail* has a learning difficulty, mobility problems and is prone to angry outbursts. Leeds council adult social care staff have supported her intermittently over a few years, helping with self-care and chaotic living conditions. Recently, it considered commissioning weekly visits from a support worker to help Gail manage her home. But instead, under a new approach launched in Le
  • Colten Care celebrates as Hampshire care home is declared ‘Outstanding’

    A Hampshire care home is celebrating after being officially rated as one of the top dedicated dementia homes in the country.
    One team: Staff at Colten Care’s Linden House including Sam Reid, Interim Home Manager (with certificate) celebrate the home’s ‘Outstanding’ rating.
    Colten Care’s Linden House in Lymington is one of only 55 dementia homes in England to be declared ‘Outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
    The rating also places the New Street

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