New data obtained by former Care Minister Paul Burstow reveals 2063 care homes across the country are operating without a registered manager responsible for care. These account for almost 12% of England’s 17,193 registered care homes.
Commenting, Mr Burstow said “Would we be happy for any member of our family to be in these homes? I don’t think so. And we would never accept this in a healthcare setting and there is no reason why we should be prepared to accept it for people living in residential care.
“Last month CQC found, unsurprisingly, that care homes with registered managers performed better than those without. This situation is simply not acceptable – things clearly need to change, fast”.
These new figures follow CQCs findings last month that 1 in 5 nursing homes do not have enough staff on duty to provide safe care.
A separate report also found that 36% of allegations of abuse reported to local authorities happened in care homes compared to 6% in hospitals, with over half of the allegations in care homes relating to care staff compared to just over 20% in hospitals.
Mr Burstow, who in September published a report with Demos on the Future of Residential Care has called for a “revolution” to drive up standards and dramatically improve care. The report also argues residential care has a key part to play in meeting the challenges facing the health and care sector and needs to be recognised as an equal partner.
Mr Burstow said “We can’t afford to wait – by 2030 there will be an extra 239,000 people over 85 needing 24/7 care. If we don’t have the right offer and the right number of places for the people who need them then the result will be much much poorer outcomes for those individuals, much greater strain on carers, and ultimately much greater use of the NHS as the service of last resort.”
Among the Commission’s recommendations are calls to ensure that every home has a registered manager, that care workers have a licence to practice, and that the living wage is introduced in the care sector.