High care standards

CARE standards in Midlothian have been praised by the Care Commission.

In its latest Quality of Care Review, the Care Commission has revealed that 72 care services in Midlothian achieved grades of 5 (very good) and 6 (excellent) in their latest inspections, while only one service in the region received grades of 1 (unsatisfactory) and 2 (poor).

The one service rated poor – The Penicuik Nursery – has since shut down.

The findings have been published in the Care Commission’s latest, and final, Quality of Care Review, which appraises the standards of care being provided at services in Scotland – and highlights how the watchdog has helped drive up these standards since its inception in 2002.

Among the organisations receiving top marks in Midlothian are council-run and private nurseries, care homes and individual child minders.

Councillor Jackie Aitchison, cabinet member for children and family services, said: “This is a positive report. We are pleased at the proportion of services that have performed to a high standard.

“Over the past eight years, the council, along with its partners in the voluntary and private sectors, have worked together to improve services for people in Midlothian.

“We have also worked closely with the Care Commission and we acknowledge the part it has played in the development of services.

“The report has only recently been published and the council is examining the detail.”

The Care Commission report reveals that more than a quarter of all care services across the country have received the highest grades following their inspections over the past year, while only a small minority are performing below acceptable standards.

David Wiseman, the Care Commission’s acting Chief Executive, said: “The Quality of Care Review clearly shows that the overall quality of care in Scotland is good.

“In some cases, the standards of care provided are excellent and we have been greatly encouraged by the amount of good practice we have come across.

“From April 1, a new care regulator – Social Care and Social Work Improvement Scotland (SCSWIS) – will take over the duties of the Care Commission, apart from the regulation of independent healthcare services, which will be transferred to Health Improvement Scotland (HIS).

“This report provides a benchmark against which both SCSWIS and HIS can measure their progress in improving the quality of care.

“By presenting what we have found in nine years of regulation, we have set the scene not just for SCSWIS and HIS, but for all of those with the power to change things for the better.”