Staff ‘breached human rights’ of residents at Glebe Villa care home in Bristol

Residents at a Bristol care home for people with learning disabilities had their human rights breached, according to a government inspection. Glebe Villa care home in St George was visited by an inspector from the Care Quality Commission on three occasions in June and July 2022, and was rated ‘inadequate’ overall.

The inspection found that staff restrained people without training, fed a pescatarian a hotdog and spoke about patients in “inappropriate” ways. The home is run by Aston Care, and according to its website it provides accommodation and care for up to seven adults with learning disabilities, challenging behaviour, epilepsy, physical disabilities or early-onset dementia, and offers them ‘a wide range of activities’.

The website says that their philosophy is ‘to promote independence, offer choices and treat individuals in a dignified and respectful manner’. The last full inspection of Glebe Villa in 2018 rated the home ‘good’, and the new inspection noted that ‘people told us they were happy living at Glebe Villa and relatives said they were satisfied with the care’.

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But the CQC found in its most recent inspection that patients do not receive ‘kind and compassionate care’ at the home. A report published on August 5 said: “People were not supported in dignified and respectful way that encouraged people to have autonomy, independence and control over their lives.

“Systems had not been embedded established to assess, monitor and mitigate risks in respect of the culture of the home and care and support of people. This placed people at risk of harm and breached their human rights..”

According to the report, staff ‘spoke about people in front of others in a derogatory way’. It found that on two separate occasions, two members of staff had ‘inappropriate’ discussions in front of others about continence care and an incident which happened at a social club where a resident was unhappy.

And it added that people were ‘not treated in a respectful way and as an equal adult in their own home’. The report gave an example of when someone asked for help with going to the toilet three times and was told: “You have just been your nappy does not need changing”.

An inspector also saw members of staff restraining a patient when they ‘had not received training’ in how to do this, and the report noted that the CQC ‘could not be assured’ of this person’s safety. It added that there was ‘no evidence’ that staff had explored whether there was a less restrictive way of handling the situation.

The report noted poor record keeping in the care home, and said there was a ‘a lack of understanding when incidents need to be reported to safeguarding and the lack of understanding of the legal implications in respect of the use of restraint’.

And inspectors highlighted problems with how people at the home were fed. Their report said that one person who was a pescatarian had been given hotdogs and that there was ‘no evidence this person had been offered fish’ . And it added that one person’s food chart indicated that they had ‘eaten potatoes, cheese and beans on the majority of the days for a period of 13 days’.

Glebe Villa has been approached for comment. A description of Aston Care on their website says: “We encourage fulfilment of individuals by maximising their potential. By demonstrating our beliefs in equal opportunities, we enable the residents in our care to become more valued members of society.

“We constantly seek ways in which we can improve quality of life for each service user in our care. This aim is supported by a friendly and caring staff team, who are experienced in their field of care.”

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