Ombudsman issues rare finding about Wandsworth independent care provider
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has issued a rare public notice against a Wandsworth care provider for not acting appropriately when dealing with a complaint.
Corden Assist Ltd, trading as Bluebird Care (Wandsworth), refused to comply with the Ombudsman’s recommendations to apologise to a family and pay them £200 to put right failings the Ombudsman found with the homecare it provided to their elderly relative.
The family asked the Ombudsman to investigate after they said the company charged them for care their relative did not receive for three days in September 2016.
According to the family, the carer was not able to cope with the alleged behaviour of the relative, who has dementia, and asked one of the relatives to help.
The company was not able to show adequate records to the Ombudsman that the care it charged for was provided. It also failed to record concerns expressed by the carer about his ability to deal with the relative, and family members’ concerns about the level of care provided.
Following the initial investigation in July, the Ombudsman also asked the company to waive 50% of the fees for the three-day period.
It has failed to carry out any of the recommendations, and has instead decided to pursue the family through the courts for unpaid care fees.
Michael King, Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, said:
“We have had the ability to investigate complaints about independent care providers since 2010 and it is very rare that we issue such notices of non-compliance.
“We know that the way a care provider responds to complaints can say a lot about the culture and ethos of that company, and a mature and open attitude to those problems can be a real driver for service improvements if handled correctly.
“In this case, the care provider’s initial failure to deal with the complaint properly has been further compounded by the failure to comply with the fair and pragmatic recommendations we have made.
“I now urge the provider to think again, provide the simple remedy we have recommended, and learn from the issues raised in this complaint.”
A copy of the initial investigation, and of the Adverse Findings Notice has been shared with care regulator, the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The CQC uses the Ombudsman’s investigations to inform future inspections of care providers.
Latest News from
Draft Public Service Ombudsman Bill laid in Parliament05/12/2016 12:37:21
A new complaints body will provide the public with greater confidence that their voices have been heard.
Medway Council criticised for not reviewing school transport policy properly16/05/2019 16:10:00
Medway Council has been criticised by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman for failing to review its home to school transport policy following an earlier complaint.
Vulnerable man put at risk because of safeguarding failings by Wirral council10/05/2019 14:15:00
A vulnerable man remained at risk from poor care for more than 18 months, despite Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council being alerted to problems, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Maidstone council tried to charge for reviewing housing application decisions09/05/2019 14:15:00
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has uncovered an unusual charging policy during an investigation into a housing complaint about Maidstone Borough Council.
Ombudsman responds to new Ministry guidance for councils08/05/2019 13:38:00
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has welcomed the publication of new guidance for councils on scrutiny by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government.
Lancashire County Council criticised for failing to support vulnerable children properly03/05/2019 09:15:00
Lancashire County Council has been criticised by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman for not providing the right support for two vulnerable siblings when they moved to live with their aunt and uncle.
City council to review transport policy for adults with special educational needs following Ombudsman investigation02/05/2019 14:15:00
A Birmingham mother had to drive five hours a day to take her adult son, who had ‘severe and critical needs’, to his specialist college, because Birmingham City Council did not provide him with transport, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Cornwall Council takes more than a decade to decide village green application26/04/2019 11:15:00
Cornwall Council has taken more than 11 years to determine a man’s village green application, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Mother of murder victim failed by probation provider, Ombudsman finds25/04/2019 15:38:00
A grieving family was let down by Dorset, Devon & Cornwall Community Rehabilitation Company (CRC) due to a number of failings after the tragic murder of their son and brother Adrian Munday, an investigation by the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman has found.