Date Published: 22 May 2009

Coventry care home owner fined in CQC's first prosecution

A Coventry care home owner has been fined £1,666 in the first prosecution brought by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Greentree Enterprises Limited owners of Clarendon House in Birmingham Road, Allesley, Coventry, pleaded guilty to failing to make arrangements for the recording, handling, safekeeping, safe administration and disposal of medicines received into the care home, at Coventry Magistrates Court on 7 May.

This constituted a breach of regulation 13 (2) of the Care Homes Regulations 2001 and the company was fined £1,666 and ordered to pay £600 court costs. The maximum fine for this offence is £2,500.

The case marks the first prosecution brought by CQC the regulator for health and adult social care in England. CQC came into being on 1 April bringing together the work of former regulators the Healthcare Commission (HC), the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) and the Mental Health Act Commission (MHAC).

Action was taken against the home owner after it failed to put right the problems relating to the home's management of medicines. Multiple and repeated errors were seen and in one instance a resident did not receive any pain-relieving medication for three days.

The problems were first highlighted by CSCI in July last year and CSCI staff found there were still issues on visits to the home in October 2008, January and March 2009.

However, two days before the hearing at Coventry Magistrates Court CQC inspectors carried out an unannounced inspection at the home, which cares for older people, and found the previous problems had been rectified.

Andrea Gordon, regional director for CQC in the West Midlands, said:

"The result of this case sends out a clear message to those providing care services, that if regulations are not followed and the correct standards are not maintained we will take robust action.

CQC inspected this home two days before the court hearing and was satisfied that the home responsible had put systems in place to guard against this happening again.

But making sure people receive the best care is CQC's priority and service providers and people who use services alike should be assured that we will act when we find this is not happening."

 

Source: The CareQuality Commission (England, UK).

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