By Debbie le Quesne

Worcestershire CCG quality monitoring initiative under fire

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A web-based self-assessment system aimed at helping 58 private sector nursing homes across Worcestershire meet ever-increasing legal compliance standards has been branded “hard work and time consuming.”

Residential nursing providers already using the tool in neighbouring Warwickshire and Coventry have claimed it is a “struggle to use.”

And now it’s been rolled out in Worcestershire fears have been raised that data entered online may be used for punitive measures if it shows homes are not meeting the quality assurance mark demanded by clinical commissioning groups.

The package – known as Care Homes Dashboard – has been developed by NHS Arden Commissioning Support in partnership with Wyre Forest Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Redditch and Bromsgrove CCG and South Worcestershire CCG, to “monitor, manage and improve standards of care.”

But so far it has failed to win universal support in pilot areas.

Criticism has also come from the regional Care Association for Worcester with many managers and owners feeling it’s yet another hurdle that the industry would have to jump for no additional rewards.

Some of the homes in Warwickshire and Coventry have been using the Dashboard tool and frankly, have found it to be hard work.

In a blame culture, homes are concerned, that despite the CCG saying it would not use the data for punitive methods, it wouldn’t be the case

I’m concerned too that my members are already swamped with Care Quality Commission ‘must-do’ tasks, and while I appreciate the Dashboard is aimed at being proactive, it’s yet another tier of data management that managers and owners are expected to fit in to their already overcrowded work schedules.

Sadly, although West Midlands Care Association represented a huge swathe of providers, it had not been involved with the development of the Dashboard.

The Dashboard claims to provide assurance on a range of local and national clinical key performance indicators, such as infection control, falls, pressure ulcers and hospital admissions.  It also includes a confidential ‘Serious Incidents’ and a ‘Never Events’ reporting portal, where providers can alert a local patient safety team of an incident in their home.

My Worcester colleagues sum it up admirable: More work – no extra pay.


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