Shropshire older people given a voice on care quality

Older people in 16 Shropshire care homes are to be among the first in the UK to rate the standard of care they receive as part of a nationwide project being launched this week.

Not-for-profit county company Coverage Care has joined forces with 12 other leading home operators around the country to ask residents to score their care in the first ever survey of its kind.

The Your Care Rating initiative signals a new approach to the way health and social care is monitored, with care providers taking a proactive lead and introducing a standard their sector can follow for surveying residents. The results will allow both care providers and potential customers to compare results from one care home to the next.

Backed by the Care Quality Commission, the survey will cover 850 homes run by 13 companies, including the 16 in Shropshire operated by Coverage Care, the county’s largest independent care home provider.

Coverage Care chief executive, David Coull, has been involved in developing the project, working alongside other leading companies including Anchor, Care UK and HC-One, which acquired more than 240 homes from the failed Southern Cross group.

He said: “We are delighted to have played a part in bringing this unprecedented project to fruition, having long campaigned for a industry-led appraisal which demonstrates the level of care provided in both the profit and not-for-profit independent sector. We look forward to our residents being among the 50,000 older people who will receive the questionnaire this week (SEPT 17).

“Along with 12 other providers, Coverage Care is demonstrating that we welcome the views and opinions of residents, and those of their families, to ensure that we continue to offer the best possible service and care we can.”

Carried out by polling firm Ipsos Mori, the survey will ask residents and their families to rate factors including staff, activities, privacy, security and food and to say whether they are happy at their home and whether they would recommend it.

Mr Coull said: “This is not TripAdvisor for care homes, this is a way we can demonstrate the quality of our care service and know where we can make improvements. The questionnaire has been created to ensure it is as accessible as possible, to give a true reflection of our residents’ experiences.”

Coverage Care Services Limited is the county’s largest independent care home provider and also provides a range of domiciliary care services, largely in support of older people, those with dementia and people with learning disabilities in Shropshire.

The company employs around 900 people, including care staff, support workers, administrative staff and managers. It cares for more than 1,300 mainly older people across the county.


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