New management team for ‘inadequate’ care centre in Burgess Hill

Ernest Kleinwort Court in Burgess Hill. Picture: Disabilities Trust
Ernest Kleinwort Court in Burgess Hill. Picture: Disabilities Trust

The Disabilities Trust has pledged to address problems found by the care watchdog at the charity’s Ernest Kleinwort Court (EKC) centre in Burgess Hill, which supports people with physical disabilities.

An inspection by the Care Quality Commission found that the centre in Oakenfield was ‘inadequate’.

The trust issued a statement saying that it was taking the situation ‘extremely seriously’, and had put in place a ‘comprehensive action plan to bring the service up to standard’.

Changes include:

- A new trust management team has been brought in.

- Every resident’s care and support plan is being reviewed with the person concerned, their families and health professionals.

- Staff training has been increased.

- Improvements to the building and general environment are being made.

The people living at EKC, their families, and funders have been invited to discuss any concerns that they have with the senior management team; the trust’s operations director, Caroline Taylor, has updated them on progress and reiterated her ongoing involvement.

Mrs Taylor said: “I take this report extremely seriously because the people that we support are at the heart of everything we do.

“I am absolutely committed to making the necessary changes at Ernest Kleinwort Court to reflect the high standards set by the trust.

“It is vitally important that the people we support live as full a life as possible.”

The trust said it also believed the issues at EKC were in contrast to the results for trust services as a whole, which are rated as 93 per cent ‘good’ and five per cent ‘outstanding’ with only two per cent ‘requiring improvement’.

The CQC inspection team acknowledged that the trust had taken immediate action to respond to the concerns raised.

Just prior to the inspection, following concerns raised internally and externally, the trust had sent in its quality assurance team to carry out its own audit, it said.

This audit, along with a plan of action, was sent to CQC before the commission had completed the draft inspection report, demonstrating the trust’s commitment to improvements.

The trust has also commissioned an external review to establish why and how the service reached this point, and said it was committed to learning the lessons so that it can prevent similar issues recurring.

Feedback received from service users, families and external stakeholders will also be considered alongside the review.

The CQC has indicated that it will inspect the centre again within six months; in the interim the commission has asked the trust to send progress reports every four weeks as part of the actions the charity must take to address the four breaches of the health and social care regulations; the breaches are set out in the CQC report.