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Northbourne Care Home, Gateshead

Northbourne, has been recognised by the CQC as outstanding in the recent inspections, 1, 6 & 16November 2018.

The Northbourne care home in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear was awarded outstanding in two categories; responsive and well-led and good for safe, effective and caring.

Northbourne provides residential care for up to 33 older people and some of the people using the service were living with dementia.

The CQC identified that the service was exceptionally responsive to people's needs.The service had an extremely effective way of encouraging discussion and social stimulation. This was a large map of the local area on one or the corridor walls. Markers had been put on the map to identify local places of interest, including what was on offer at the location and opening times. People and visitors were encouraged to add new places and information to help provide ideas for outings and to stimulate discussions. On the opposite wall was a large map of the world. This was used to initiate discussions about places people have been in the past so they could reminisce or talk about where family members and friends lived.

CQC inspectors also highlighted that the service was exceptionally well-led. There was a particularly strong emphasis on continuous improvement, and twelve staff were nominated as dementia champions and completed advanced training. This led to improvements in how the service cared for and supported people living with dementia and resulted in positive outcomes for people who used the service.

For example, the introduction of activity boxes in the lounge on pull out shelves made it easier for people to decide from, and take part in, a variety of activities that could be enjoyed independently and catered for people with different abilities. The lobby area was made more interesting by introducing new furniture, changing the colours and introducing interesting pictures and music. We observed people sitting in the area and making use of this space. Bathrooms were redesigned to make them "more tranquil" and "less clinical". As a result, bathing became more of a relaxing experience rather than a task.

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