Victorian home where residents control their own care is named Care Home of the Year

A Cumbrian care home where the residents control their own care and the staff describe themselves as working in their residents’ home, was today (FRIDAY 30 SEPT) named Care Home of the Year by the National Gold Standards Framework Centre (GSF).

Silloth Nursing Home beat off stiff opposition from the six other homes on the shortlist to win the award that is presented to the care home judged by an expert panel to be delivering the best end of life care.

The judges, who included national independent experts from the care homes sector, assessed all seven finalists against 20 standards and Silloth scored full marks in all of the categories.

In their report, the judges said: “The short-listed homes clearly represented ‘the best of the best’. It is clear that they have something significant and significantly different to offer as best practice to the field, addressing all aspects of end of life care and demonstrating a commitment to person-centred care for residents and their families in innovative and compassionate ways. It was uplifting to see such dedication to high-quality end of life care.”

Linda Faulder, Senior Nurse at Silloth, said that providing their 38 residents with a home away from home was central to everything she and all 70 staff members strived for. She added: “They are right at the centre of everything we do. Care is delivered how they want it, where they want it. We have given them control of their care and they own it. We sometimes joke about how we just work in their home. But it’s true.

“We talk to our residents about their wishes right from when they arrive in the home. This includes everything from the meals they like, family visiting times and how they want their room. This is their home not a last chance hotel and we want all of our residents to have a good life right up until the end of their life.”

In line with their wishes, all but two of the residents at Silloth who died in the last year, did so at the home.

All of the shortlisted homes had achieved Beacon status (the highest possible) at GSF reaccreditation and demonstrated an outstanding commitment to provide their residents the very best personalised care right up until the end of their lives. The other shortlisted homes were:

  • Chestnut House Nursing Home, Dorchester
  • Churchill House, Ludlow
  • Wren Hall Nursing Home, Nottinghamshire
  • The Grange Residential Home, Southampton
  • Birds Hill Nursing Home, Poole
  • Camelot House, Wellington

Every resident at Silloth has expressed their preferences about how and where they would like to be cared for, in the form of an Advance Care Plan.

As well as the Care Home of the Year Award, 14 homes were receiving the GSF Quality Hallmark for the first time, while 38 were being re-accredited. This is the third time that Sillloth has been accredited by GSF, demonstrating that the high standards have been embedded in the care they and the other re-accredited homes provide all their residents and their families.

Ian Turner, Chairman of the Registered Nursing Home Association, presenting the award said: “Only providers that put the wishes and preferences of every individual in their care at the heart of everything they do, will truly deliver quality care through the duration of their stay. It is a genuine privilege to be able to present the GSF Quality Hallmark awards in the knowledge that all of the successful homes are truly dedicated to providing genuine person-centred, compassionate care right up until the end of their residents’ life.

“The whole team at Silloth Nursing Home deserve enormous praise for their dedication to giving their residents the care they want and deserve and should be held up as an example for all homes to follow.”

Annabel Foulger, GSF Social Care Programmes Manager, said: “As people approach the end of their lives they want to be cared for in familiar surroundings, by people who know and understand their wishes. By engaging all of their residents and their families in detailed conversations about these wishes, allied with a passion for fulfilling them, Silloth is an exemplar for care homes across the UK.”

Those care homes that have received the GSF Quality Hallmark Award have demonstrated real improvements in the quality of care they provide, and halved crisis hospital admissions of residents at the end of life. To be accredited, homes have to achieve 20 quality standards, ranging from leadership and support to dignity and respect.

CQC recognises the achievements of GSF accredited care homes and the awards are endorsed by all major care homes’ organisations and Skills Academy for Social Care.