Two care homes have been upgraded by the CQC after being told to make improvements to their services.

Mill Lodge in Great Harwood and Altham Care Home in Clayton-le-Moors both received Good ratings from the health and social care watchdog after they were found to be in breach of a number of regulations at their last inspections.

Most notably, Altham Care Home received a Good rating, after previously being rated as Requires Improvement and before that, Inadequate.

The Clayton-le-Moors care home was criticised by inspectors in April 2020 for having ‘dirty bathrooms’ and ‘a strong smell of urine’ and was placed into special measures.

After a follow-up visit in July last year, Care Quality Commission bosses gave the facility, which cares for 32 adults with dementia and those who require nursing or personal care, a Requires Improvement rating, as they were concerned that registered managers had failed to ensure staff received the required training and support as deemed necessary.

However, following this inspection on November 11, enough improvement had been made and the provider was no longer in breach of regulations.

A spokesperson for the CQC said: "At our last inspection the registered managers and provider had failed to ensure people's privacy and dignity was maintained.

"This was a breach of regulation 10 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 Regulations 2014.

"Enough improvement had been made at this inspection and the provider was no longer in breach of regulation 10.

"We saw people being supported to maintain their privacy and dignity whilst independence was being promoted.

"We also saw staff providing people with good explanations and encouragement whilst mobilising and eating. This helped to promote dignity and independence."

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Meanwhile, in May 2021, Mill Lodge in Great Harwood was rated Requires Improvement after concerns were raised over staffing issues and the maintenance of fixtures and fittings.

But last month, following a re-inspection, the CQC found improvements had been made and the provider was no longer in breach.

A spokesperson for the CQC said: "We carried out an unannounced focused inspection of this service on April 29 and 30 2021.

"Breaches of legal requirements were found. The provider completed an action plan after the last inspection to show what they would do and by when to improve safe care and treatment and good governance.

"We undertook this focused inspection to check they had followed their action plan and to confirm they now met legal requirements.

"At the last inspection, this key question was rated as requires improvement. At this inspection, this key question has improved to good."

At the CQC's last inspection, the provider failed to have suitable arrangements for the service and maintenance of premises and equipment, which was a breach of Regulation 15 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 Regulations 2014.

Enough improvement had been made at the November inspection and the provider was no longer in breach of that regulation.

The spokesperson said: "Equipment had been maintained and serviced to a high standard, including new mattresses, furnishings and flooring."

Prior to the inspection, concerns were also raised about the numbers of staff available but during the visit inspectors found staffing had been increased on the morning shift and was being kept under review.

Improvements had also been made in relation to medication storage and use and the management of resident records had improved.

Both care homes now boast Good ratings on the CQC website.

Manager of Altham Care Home, Paula McGarry said: "I was absolutely thrilled to bits when the report came through.

"I have worked hard but not only myself, I have a dedicated staff team and I give all my thanks and praise to them for all the hard work they have put in too, it has been a team effort all round, it has been hard work and sad at times through these last two years and our new inspection report has given us all such a great feeling of how well we have all worked.

"I would also like to give my thanks to the owners of Altham Care Home for their continued support to myself."

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