What's going on at Oliver & Co

Upton’s Orchard Care Home Faces Criticism over Unfair Dismissal & Poor Standards of Care

Posted on July 4th 2017

A Court has ruled that a staff member at Upton’s Orchard Care Home was unfairly sacked after she reported her concerns about the nursing care home’s standards of care.

After becoming worried about low staffing levels during night shifts, Kaley Sweetman raised concerns to her bosses and subsequently the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The CQC is an organisation which monitors, inspects and regulates services, such as nursing care homes and hospitals, to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety. Several days after reporting her concerns, the nursing care home told her that she had failed her probation period.

A court tribunal panel has now ruled emphatically that this was an unfair dismissal. The news comes just months after the Care Quality Commission published a damning report on the Orchard Care Home.

The Orchard Care Home, on Acres Lane in Upton, defines itself as a, “luxury care home,” which offers, “skilled elderly care services.” However, its latest Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection paints a different picture.

The Nursing Care Home Has Been Rated as ‘Inadequate:’

The nursing care home charges between £443 and £800 a week per resident. Despite this, the nursing care home scored the lowest possible score of “inadequate” when inspected in November 2016. Subsequently, the CQC published their report in March 2017.

The report showed a long list of failures, some of which included:

  • There were issues with the dosage and storage of medication. When the CQC’s visited they witnessed four patients being given the wrong dosage of medication. They were also concerned that medication was not being stored at the correct temperature.
  • Checks on pressure relieving equipment were not robust. The CQC inspected four mattresses. One of the mattress settings was too high and one was too low. The other two mattresses had dials or switches. This made it hard to know what level they were set at. Sadly, this could potentially lead to pressure sores on patients with reduced mobility. Pressure sores, if left to develop, can be life threatening and are often very painful.
  • The report concluded that people were not always treated with dignity and respect.
  • Unfortunately, people were at risk of harm and injury.

In regards to the Court case a spokesperson for the nursing care home said;

“We take our duty of care to residents and staff very seriously, and are disappointed that on this occasion we have fallen short of our own high-standards.”

They have also employed new management within the home.

How can we help?

Those housed in nursing care homes are often vulnerable. They rely on care home staff to protect them from harm. Despite this, every year we claim compensation for clients who have suffered from pressure sores or fallen and injured themselves due to the negligence of nursing staff in nursing care homes. If you think you may have a compensation claim please contact us on 01244 354688. You can also fill in our contact form here.

Call and speak to a lawyer on 01244 312306