Stockton's Direct Health 'inadequate', inspectors say

Direct Health, Stockton Image copyright Google
Image caption Direct Health was criticised in a number of key areas

A health provider has been placed into special measures after watchdogs found users "did not receive safe care".

Direct Health, based in Stockton, Teesside, has been rated inadequate by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) amid concerns over management of medications, staff shortages and training.

It provides care for about 700 people in their own homes.

The firm said it is working to address the issues.

Inspections were carried out in March and April and Debbie Westhead, deputy chief inspector of adult social care in the North, said care for people in Stockton, Billingham, Eaglescliffe and Yarm fell "short of what we expect services to provide".

Staff shortages meant the company struggled to deliver adequate care, wrong doses of medication were sometimes administered and care workers felt pressure to work extra hours, the CQC said.

In a statement, Direct Health said it has been "working closely to a very specific action plan" and added it "takes heart from the fact that the report states that service users are happy with their care staff".

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