HOUSEKEEPING staff at the Wellington Hospital were celebrating last night after winning a major national award for cleanliness.
The UK’s largest independent hospital won a Gold CAP Award following an unannounced inspection into quality and standards.
The CAP Awards (the Continuous Advancement Programme) measure the quality of cleaning and housekeeping in healthcare facilities across the UK and are regarded by patients and their families as a mark of high quality.
Sunny Chada, Chief Operating Officer, for the central London hospital, said the award was recognition of the hard work and dedication of the housekeeping department.
He said: “We’re delighted with this award win. To achieve a Gold standard on our very first attempt is proof of the attention to detail we bring to all aspects of the care we provide here at The Wellington.
“The award really is a tribute to everyone in the housekeeping department who work tirelessly to ensure that the facilities are not only hygienic but also warm and welcoming.”
CAP inspectors were impressed with the way the housekeeping team dealt with the challenge of maintaining quality across four separate buildings, on multiple floors on an almost 24/7 basis.
Ian Jackson, Managing Director of the CAP Awards, said: “We were hugely impressed with the strong departmental organisation, with robust training and support for the housekeeping team.
“The Wellington had the confidence to attempt a Gold Award on first inspection – a sure sign that standards at the hospital are consistently high.
“Well done to the members of the housekeeping team, this a thoroughly deserved award win.”
The Wellington Hospital has four decades of expertise in treating patients from the UK and overseas and has an international reputation for offering a premium service in key areas of healthcare, including: neurosurgery, cardiac care, orthopaedics, acute neurological rehabilitation and gynaecology.
TODAY’S announcement of the new Care Quality Commission ratings system is more likely to succeed if a culture of consistency is at its heart.
The decision to rate homes on a sliding scale, so that residents and their loved ones can discriminate easily between local providers, is a smart move.
And asking if a particular care home is safe, caring, effective, responsive to the residents’ needs and well-led, will ensure inspections are providing an insightful picture of the service on offer.
But what will truly set great homes apart, and help families feel confident in their choice of care provider, is knowing that ‘mum’ and / or ‘dad’ will get ‘outstanding care’ on a day-to-day basis and trusting that there is delivery of quality over a period of time.
At the CAP Awards we help care providers improve standards in the essential services of catering and housekeeping so that consistency of service is guaranteed.
Crucially we set year-long improvement plans so that providers can continually ensure that they are serving the best quality meals in a clean and welcoming environment.
We go a long way to providing this evidence with the audit criteria being set at legal and ‘best practice’.
And we go one step further in that the service user’s actual experience is recorded and ‘scored’ as they receive it i.e. cleanliness of the premises, the quality of the food on the plate that day. Perhaps the new CQC audit process may take this next step? We will see.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that the management of catering and housekeeping is often indicative of the management of the whole site – the canary in the coal mine.
If CQC inspectors pay close attention to ‘inadequate service’ in catering and housekeeping via levels of performance such as staff motivation and hygiene, then they may well be an indicator of the broader performance of the home in question.
The CQC should be applauded for the launch of these new ratings standards which good, and worthy providers, will only benefit from.
For too long the vast majority of excellent care homes have been punished by those who let down the sector with poor performance. Today’s announcement should go some way to starting to raise standards across the board, especially if consistency of quality is core to this new era.