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What care homes can do to improve life for their residents

Reported in The Guardian (5 September): It’s official: size matters. In the Care Quality Commission’s latest state of adult social care services report (pdf), 89% of smaller care providers were rated good or outstanding, compared with 65% of larger nursing homes. The figures are similar for domiciliary care.

The CQC praised these services for looking “beyond people’s medical conditions” and encouraging people to “be themselves”. This is the crux of the matter: smaller services are dedicated to person-centred care.

How do smaller services provide personalised care and can this be mirrored in larger settings?

Personalisation is about having choice and control; person-centred care is something that, in theory, any service can achieve. It is about being sensitive to individual needs and desires: the way a person wishes to be referred to, when and where someone wants to eat, what they love and hate … Delivering person-centred care means knowing who a person was, is and wants to be. There are several ways to make this attitude part of their care.

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