‘Exceptional’ staff help deliver outstanding rating for Wigan Council’s supported living service

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image depicting supported living

A council service that provides invaluable care for people with learning and physical disabilities, autism and sensory impairments has been rated as outstanding.

Staff within Wigan Council’s Supported Living teams were lauded by inspectors for the “exceptional personalised care” that met residents’ needs and wishes.

Friends and family members not only described workers as “brilliant and fantastic” but also commended them for treating everyone with dignity and respect.

During the October inspection – conducted by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) – inspectors spoke with service users and relatives about their experience of the care provided.

Workers were praised for always going out of their way to help and donating their own time to ensure people receive high quality care.

Coun Keith Cunliffe, cabinet member for adult social care and health, said: “We are extremely fortunate in the borough to have such dedicated and caring teams who put peoples’ care at the forefront of everything they do.

“It takes a huge amount of hard work and commitment to achieve an Outstanding rating so this is an absolutely fantastic result for all those who have been integral in achieving it.

“I’d like to thank all the staff for the massive difference they make to peoples’ lives and the reassurance they provide to loved ones.”

The Supported Living Service provides for 130 residents of all ages across the borough, helping them live as independently as possible.

An example of the excellent care highlighted by the inspection team saw staff go above and beyond to provide end of life care.

Relatives who lived overseas were regularly updated on the resident’s condition and with the support of district nurses, staff went the extra mile to ensure the individual could remain in their own home, which was their wish.

Furthermore, arrangements were made for a minister to regularly visit and pray with the person and they were never left on their own, while a birthday party was also brought forward to ensure they could celebrate with friends.

The social element of the service was another theme picked out by the CQC with the report referencing one property which had set up an annual festival, called Tanfest.

The event involved live music, quizzes and games with one person living at the property DJing the event.

Weekly schedules also showed cinema outings, art and craft, sensory sessions, swimming and meals out throughout the week.

But key to attaining the outstanding rating was the time taken to develop extremely meaningful therapeutic relationships with people, the report said.

Inspectors noted that 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.

This ensured those who use the service can live as full a life as possible and achieve the best possible outcomes.

Helena Dennett, head of Adult Social Care Inspection at CQC, said: “We found people received exceptionally personalised care which met their needs and wishes. The service supported people to set and achieve goals and fulfil their potential.

“Staff thought nothing of donating their own time to ensure people received high quality care and had their needs met.

“People and relatives were positive about the care and support provided by the service.

“People felt safe and well-cared for and relatives spoke of feeling at ease, knowing their loved ones were safe and receiving effective care which met their needs. Congratulations on achieving the Outstanding rating.”