Summerwood, New Milton
Summerwood in New Milton, Hampshire, was rated Outstanding for being safe, caring responsive and well-led following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), on 26 February & 4 March 2020.
The effective category received a score of Good.
Summerwood is a residential care home providing personal care to people with learning disabilities and/or autism.
The registered manager had a 'can do' attitude to managing complex behaviour and was a role model to staff who followed their lead in providing care that was safe and non-judgemental. Behaviours were not seen as the person's 'problem' but for staff to try to understand and respond to with innovative strategies in a way that would have a positive outcome for the person. Staff implemented the practice of positive behaviour support which enabled people to work towards their goals with proactive and reactive, holistic support, however complex or challenging their behaviours might be.
Positive behaviour support plans were developed in line with national good practice and provided detailed and up to date guidance for staff about individual triggers and early identification of changes in mood or behaviour. There were clear strategies and approaches to use if people displayed behaviours which may challenge and put themselves or others at risk of harm. Staff took part in debrief meetings following behavioural incidents which enabled them to reflect and discuss events before the incident occurred, actions taken and any learning.
Staff were exceptionally knowledgeable about people's life histories and family relationships which meant their cultural and spiritual needs were also understood and respected. The registered manager spoke about one person whose family's culture was to look after each other within the family home. They supported the family to come to terms with their loved one moving into a care home and were sensitive to their thoughts, feelings and wishes.
CQC inspectors observed the registered manager speak a word to the person in their native language. They asked about this and were told they had researched and printed some basic words for staff to learn.
This had not been as successful as he would have liked but he was going to keep trying. However, one staff member was able to converse with the person in their first language which helped them to maintain their own cultural identity and language skills.
The service was exceptionally responsive in meeting people's needs at the end of their life. Staff supported one person to remain at home which was their wish and was especially important to them. Staff were exceptionally skilled in understanding their needs, learning from, and acting on advice given by palliative care professionals. Staff sourced specialist easy read pictorial booklets and developed social stories to help explain to the person about their illness and the side effects of treatment. Staff moved their room to one more appropriate for end of life care and support, so they were closer to everyone, could have their door open if they wanted and could see and hear people.
Two health professionals spoke to the CQC inspectors about their positive experiences and said, "The care and support that my client has received has been exceptional. The managers and staff have all been excellent and kept me well informed about any changes in care, safeguarding or incidents" and, "On previous visits the staff and management have been highly professional and have been very open and welcoming."