The News at Ten

Actually it was eleven when I started typing, but i thought the title might get your attention.

I was just updating my news stories, when it occurred to me that there are a limited amount of subjects that are reported on, when it comes to care.

I monitor the news on a daily basis for stories about care, that will inform my work, and help to advise people looking for good care.

Stories tend to fall into a few categories-

1-Care scandals, these are the ones that make national news, and usually involve criminal behaviour. Orchid View being the lastest example.

2-Failing care service. Usually reported in local papers with the a headline like-“Care Watchdog slams poor care” These are the stories about CQC inspections of services.

3-Stories promoting services. Again usually promoted in local press, but occasionally national when there is a special event on, such as National Care Home Open Day. Local stories tend to be of the Garden party/100th birthday variety.

4-Good care stories. These are the hens teeth ones, and are so few and far between that it’s not possible to spot a trend.

5- Finally there are the Government Policy type stories, such as the recent Care Act/Care cost Cap.

So what can we conclude from this?

Is the lack of good news stories a result of media bias, or a drought of good news in care?

I would like to think it’s media bias, but sadly I think the Bad news stories outweigh the Good.

There is clearly a need for the providers of care to pull their fingers out and focus on care quality and promoting the benefits of good care.

Listening to The Archers last night, I wonder if part of Peggy’s current unhappiness isn’t the worry about going into a care home.

Many people in later life that I speak to worry about care. Part of this worry is well founded, but part is also due to the media delight in reporting bad care.

As always I would say get some sound advice before buying any care service.

National Care Homes Open Day

I’m not a fan of care home open days, it all seems a bit Victorian Voyeur to me.

This initiative has some good aims at heart. Opening homes to be part of the community and getting people involved.

However it does seem by look of some of the big firm sign ups, that it’s become a marketing exercise.

Let’s hope it doesn’t.

And of course if you are looking for a home it’s a great chance to have a thorough look around and talk to folks before deciding.

One would also hope that CQC have boots on the ground.

Regardless of my reservations, inviting local communities into homes does provide opportunities. Reducing isolation and institutionalisation being two. Opportunities for local volunteers to get involved in activity in the home, for the dual benefits of themselves and the residents.

I’m going to sign up as a member of the public and see what happens, watch this space.