Rise in ‘inadequate’ ratings

A sharp rise in the proportion of dementia care homes rated “inadequate” or “requires improvement” has been recorded by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), according to an exclusive story in the Guardian.

It shows more than 50% of care homes offering dementia care in England and subject to inspection were rated in these categories in 2022 and 2021, up from under 40% in the previous three years.  In 2022 and 2021 8.8% and 8.6% respectively of dementia care homes were rated “inadequate”, a substantial increase from 3.7% recorded in 2020.

Among the findings of CQC inspectors, the Guardian reports, were residents’ dressings remaining unchanged for 20 days, “revolting” filthy carpets, “unexplained and unwitnessed wounds”, and equipment “encrusted with dirt”.  In 2022, 880 dementia care homes were rated “good” while 160 were rated “inadequate”.

“This national crisis is happening behind closed doors but in plain view of those with the power and duty to protect the rights of people placed in the most vulnerable of positions who often cannot speak up for themselves,” Helen Wildbore, director of the Residents and Relatives Association, told the Guardian.

Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, said: “There’s no real sense the government has a grip on the problem. Too little has been done to help social care recover from the battering it received during the pandemic, let alone improve,” she said.