CARE homes in Hartlepool will continue to be scrutinised by council officials despite a rise in the number of top gradings under a new scheme.
Hartlepool Borough Council annually reviews older people’s care homes in a bid to ensure high standards of care are met and are maintained.
Latest gradings show a rise in the number of homes receiving the top marks, up from six out of 21 last year to 11 this time round.
Also no care homes in Hartlepool have been awarded the lowest grading, with 1 being the best and 4 being the worst.
The gradings determine what fee levels the care homes receive from the local authority, while it also provides families and carers with the information they need to make an informed choice about their relatives’ care.
The weekly fee levels are £469 for an older person living in a Grade 1 care home, £445 for a Grade 2 home, £422 for a Grade 3 and £399 for an older person living in a Grade 4 care home.
Hartlepool Council’s Quality Standards Framework (QSF) for older people’s care homes was introduced in 2012.
The initial QSF assessment resulted in six of the 21 care homes achieving the top Grade 1 rating, 12 being rated as Grade 2 and 3 being rated as Grade 3.
After that assessment, each provider was given a copy of their individual assessment reports to review and to give them the chance to make improvements.
Jill Harrison, the council’s assistant director of adult services, has produced a report to go before the adult services committee next week.
Mrs Harrison said: “Officers will be undertaking a trend analysis of the results from the 2013 assessment to identify, with the involvement of providers, any areas for further development and future service improvements.
“It has been agreed with providers that there will be a comprehensive review of the QSF process prior to the 2014 assessment.
“This will take into account forthcoming changes to the Care Quality Commission’s standards as well as the frequency of assessments and how the assessment process is applied.”
Volunteers from Healthwatch Hartlepool helped carry out the consultation with residents.
The committee meets on Monday, November 25, at the Civic Centre at 10am.
COUNCIL officials have published the list of gradings from care homes across Hartlepool.
The 2013 list for older people’s care homes shows further improvements in the evidence presented to the local authority, according to senior officers and a result, 11 of the 21 care homes achieved the top Grade 1 rating, nine rated as Grade 2 and one rated as Grade 3.
No care home fell within the lowest Grade 4 banding.
There were three appeals following the assessment with one eventually upheld in the care home’s favour.
The final gradings were:
Brierton Lodge 1
Four Winds 1
Gretton Court 1
Highnam Hall 1
Queens Meadow 1
Seaton Hall 1
Sheraton Court 1
Stitchell House 1
West View Lodge 1
Wynyard Woods 1
Admiral Court 2
Charlotte Grange 2
Clifton House 2
Elwick Grange 2
Gardner House 2
Manor Park 2
Warrior Park 2
Dinsdale Lodge 2