Care UK’s St Vincent’s House in Hammersmith has been recognised for its gold standard end of life care at an awards ceremony in London. More than one thousand care homes have now completed or embarked on the National Gold Standards Framework for Care Homes Training Programme (GSFCH), a national programme designed to enable quality care in care homes for people nearing the end of their lives.
St Vincent’s House is one of 35 homes from across the country to be recognised for their quality end of life care at a recent ceremony.
Kevin Henry, Home Manager of St. Vincent’s House said: “We’re delighted. This award really demonstrates that the care we provide is of the highest standard. All of our staff have worked extremely hard over the last 15 months and participated in a huge amount of training. This exciting award reflects their dedication.”
GSFCH aims for ‘gold standard’ care to be provided, enabling residents to receive a better quality of care in their final years of life, more residents dying with dignity in their preferred place of choice. Those care homes that have been accredited and received the GSF Quality Hallmark Award have demonstrated a halving of hospital deaths and crisis admissions, leading to greater satisfaction from families, residents and staff and significant cost savings for the NHS, releasing hospital beds for other patients in need of urgent hospital care.
The programme, recommended as part of the Government’s End of Life Care Strategy, helps provide better co-ordination with primary care teams and specialists and reduces avoidable hospital admissions. The GSFCH accreditation process is supported by the charity Omega, the National Association for End of Life Care, and Help the Aged.
Professor Keri Thomas, GSF National Clinical Lead, said: “We are aiming to develop a national momentum of excellence, with homes aspiring to this high standard of care, the ‘gold standard’ for people nearing the end of life.
“We now have a group of fantastic care homes that have lead the way in pioneering this work, and can show others in real and practical ways the quality of care that be achieved. We can see the real practical changes made in patterns of working, improved outcomes for residents but also the change in morale and confidence of staff- some even say this is ‘life changing’ for them.
“We feel we are reaching a tipping point. By enabling care home staff to share good practice we feel we are helping to demonstrate that top quality care is not only possible but can be the norm for care homes in this country. Our goal is that this becomes the de facto standard by which all care homes are judged in future.”
Caroline Spelman MP for Meriden, who last year tabled the Palliative Care Bill and who spoke at the event said: “The Gold Standards Framework has lifted everyone’s sights on what should be achievable in palliative care. If you don’t set a high standard it is too easy to be content with a sub-standard service. The Gold Standards Framework provides a benchmark for practitioners to strive for.”