'Crisis among failing care homes'

Four Seasons Nurses

Four Seasons Nurses

Half of England's major care home providers are failing their elderly residents in at least a quarter of their properties, say researchers.

The consumer group Which? found that some of the country's 54 large-scale providers of care for the over-65s had as many as half of their homes classed as failing by the government regulator.

It named the worst performer as Garforth-based Ideal Care Homes. The group is hosting a visit by Princess Anne next Thursday.

Which? said its nationwide analysis demonstrated "how deep problems with quality and choice run in the care system".

At the top of the table, both Avery and North Yorkshire County Council had all their homes rated as good or outstanding.

Alex Hayman from Which? said: "Too few providers are able to offer consistent, high quality care, limiting choice for stressed families in a system which is already close to breaking point". Which? is warning that this picture could rapidly worsen, as demand starts to outstrip supply in an increasing number of local areas, putting increasing pressure on care home places.

Last year, the charity Independent Age placed Yorkshire as the second worst performing region in England for the proportion of satisfactory care homes.

"Securing and retaining a stable staff group is key to delivery of a quality service in a care home and the council is aware that this is a challenge, not just in North Yorkshire, but across the country".

Last year, the charity Independent Age named Wakefield among the areas in which older people and their families faced little choice of quality care, with almost half of homes rated not good enough. He added: "Aiming for "good" and "outstanding" is our top priority and our frequent assessment of all our care homes demonstrates we are moving towards this".

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