A care home in Oswaldtwistle has been told to improve after inspectors found residents were left “at risk of a drug overdose” due to incorrectly managed medicines.

A spokesperson for the care home insists that the necessary changes have been made, since the Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated it as 'requires improvement' in December.

Vine House, on Union Road, which provides accommodation and personal care for up to 14 people in one adapted building, was criticised for “not managing and storing medicine safely”.

Protocols were not always in place to guide staff on when to administer 'as required' medicines. When they were in place they did not always match the medicine administration records.

The temperature of the medicine's cabinet was also not recorded.

The report said: “Risks to people's health and safety were not always identified and medicines were not always managed and stored safely.

“Time specific medicines did not have the exact time recorded of when the dose was last given. This meant people were at risk of overdose.”

Communal areas were also said to be left unattended “for some time” which meant there was no oversight of people if they required assistance.

One member of staff was found not to have received a disclosure and barring service (DBS) check which provides information including details about convictions and cautions held.

Concerns were also raised about the “lack of stimulation and activities” provided at the care home.

The report also highlighted several health and safety issues including wardrobes not being secured to the walls.

Risk assessments relating to people's individual needs such as mobility and nutrition were “conflicting and not robust enough to guide staff on how to safely care for people”.

Systems had not been established to assess, monitor and mitigate risks to the health, safety and welfare of residents at the home which “placed people at risk of harm.”

According to the report, the provider responded to this during the inspection process and commenced a full audit of their health and safety procedures and mitigated any immediate risks to ensure people's safety.

The report also highlighted some positive aspects of the care home.

Inspectors said infection control processes were followed and staff were said to be trained in how to “safely care for people”.

The report said: “Staff received an induction when they started in their role and completed various training courses to ensure they had the skills and knowledge to safely care for people.”

The care home was also said to treat its residents with “dignity and respect”.

The report said: “People were supported to have maximum choice and control of their lives and staff supported them in the least restrictive way possible and in their best interests; the policies and systems in the service supported this practice.

“People were treated with dignity and respect by staff who knew them well. People were encouraged to make their own decisions and were involved in their care planning process.”

People at the care home, and their relatives, spoke highly of the staff and management team. One relative said: "There is good continuity in the staff, I see the same carers each week I visit."

Another said: "[Person using the service] is safe here. I have got to know all the staff and I trust them completely. If there are any issues, they let me know straight away. I can speak to any of the staff on duty, they will all help as much as they can."

A spokesperson for Vine House said: “We were very frustrated that [the inspection] went that way. A couple of staff made a couple of unfortunate errors. Staff are now working closely with management and have been retrained.

“All of the changes that were required have already happened. The changes to wardrobes that were requested were done within 48 hours.

“We are working hard and think everything is pretty much done now.”

This is the service's first inspection since being registered with the CQC in 2019. The last rating for the service under the previous provider was 'good' and published in February 2017.