In 2014, Bucks County Council commissioned Healthwatch Bucks to undertake a review of health and social care provision in residential homes and domiciliary care across Bucks. Since then, Healthwatch Bucks has been using its statutory powers to ‘Enter and View’ health and care providers and independently monitor the quality and effectiveness of care being provided.
The goals of enter and view are to:
- Give service users and their carers a voice, sharing these with Commissioners and care providers
- Make recommendations on areas within care provision where ‘dignity’ could be improved
- Publicly share information about the quality of ‘dignified’ services to assist people in making choices about their care options
- Contribute to the development of dignity in care standards
On Friday 10 July, I visited Avondale care home in Aylesbury, assisting as a formal Healthwatch volunteer to undertake an ‘Enter and View’ visit. The report is available to view on the Healthwatch Bucks website.
Awarding five stars, we concluded:
- Avondale demonstrated very high standards of care with regard to dignity and respect,
- staff worked confidently around us and told us they enjoyed working here,
- both residents and relatives praised the level of individualised care given
It was humbling to visit the home and experience caring for older people. I hold in high regard all the staff who do it with such attention and compassion, day after day.
On various occasions during my time in Parliament, I have seen the need for Healthwatch to give voice to patients and I am delighted Healthwatch Bucks is taking this responsibility so seriously.