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Whistle blowers raise red flags around leadership and management during COVID

Leadership and management of services became notable areas of concerns in adult care homes during 2020-21, the Welsh regulator has found.

In its annual report for the year, Care Inspectorate Wales delivered over 9,170 episodes of assurance activity including 165 inspections in adult care homes despite lock down.

Concerns relating to leadership and management of adult residential care services rose from 438 concerns in 2019-20 to 735 in 2020-21. According to the regulator: “This reflected whistle blowers’ concerns about the way in which services were run, but also around access to PPE and support.”

The latter part of the year also saw a rise in the number of concerns raised by relatives about being able to visit family members living in care homes. Decreased staffing levels remained a theme throughout the year.

In total, due to the pandemic adult care homes submitted 31 per cent more submitted notifications submitted compared to 2019-20 due mostly to outbreaks of infection and a rise in death rates. In total, the regulator received 8,420 notifications of deaths of which 7,948 related to care home services. 1,399 (17.6 per cent) of these were confirmed as having COVID-19.

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