25 Jun 2014
With Elvis helping to make National Care Home Open Day a fantastic experience for residents, it’s no wonder I’m singing the praises of lots of colleagues this week.
Anchor homes across England helped ensure National Care Home Open Day 2014 was even bigger and better than last year’s.
It may not have been the King himself, but a great Elvis tribute act was a highlight at Norton House in Westminster. I also visited Greenacres in Surrey to give them a helping hand (well, two) by taking part in their fantastic Mexican wave. It was great to see all our homes create a ripple of excitement as the wave moved north across the country.
I was joined at Greenacres by former Care Services Minister and local MP Paul Burstow, who was really impressed and even Tweeted a picture of Snowy – a lovely dog who is a great companion to relatives and colleagues at the home and features in this video.
From Greenacres, it was on to Admiral Court in Carshalton, to hear how Department of Health funding has been used to fund a fantastic new sensory garden and other facilities for tenants with dementia.
Paul, who we’re working with as part of our Grey Pride campaign for better representation for older people, said: “We only tend to hear about care homes when things have gone wrong, but in fact there are hundreds and thousands of people living very happy lives in these homes."
National Care Home Open Day was developed to get exactly that point across, so it was great to hear that he had taken it on board. I’ve urged him to keep spreading that message. And I was pleased that The Times published my letter on the subject on Friday too.
Ensuring that positive message is always on the minds of all the agencies we work with, such as social services and health workers, is so important. Our location managers and their teams provide an enormously important role in supporting older people. Showcasing our services through events such as the National Care Home Open Day is one of the many ways we’re making that point.
The team at Kirklands in Cockermouth, Cumbria, for example, can be proud of the work they’re doing – having won plaudits from the Care Quality Commission for displaying “empathy and understanding of people’s needs”. They were also mentioned in local newspapers.
Kirklands was a home which achieved phenomenal results in Your Care Rating, the independent customer satisfaction survey run by Ipsos MORI, so it’s great to see quality services are recognised both by our customers and our regulators.