Merryfield, Portrait of a Life, Wellbeing

Portrait of Joe’s life

Learning the stories of our resident’s lives and celebrating their achievements is one of the greatest joys in all of our Peverel Court Care homes. Read on to discover more about Joe’s remarkable life.

Discovering our resident’s life stories is one of the most wonderful aspects of supporting them in their latter years. Lives that have been lived to the full, with twists and turns, achievements, joys and sadnesses, weave together to create a tapestry that is unique to each individual. We aim to celebrate this glorious individuality in everyday life in all of our care homes, with the knowledge of the person that we gain from talking to them and their family being absolutely fundamental to us providing truly person and relationship centred care.

 

Residents who’ve lived in different parts of the country and had interesting work experiences teach us a lot about what life used to be like. These are fascinating insights that our younger staff in particular are often captivated by, and Jo’s story is one such example.

 

Joe has lived at Merryfield since February 2022. He was in the Navy during the Second World War, worked at the Morris Motors car factory in Oxford and has been the lead singer in a band. Joe has kindly shared his story with us as follows:

 

 

“I was born in Rossington, Yorkshire on 25th May 1926. Rossington was a mining village near Doncaster.

 

My Mother, Fanny, lived in Yorkshire. My Father Wilfred was a coal miner whose job was known as a ‘Sinker’ because he was the first person to dig the hole in the ground. I was the eldest of three children; my brother Bill and sister Yvonne have sadly died now.

 

I went to Rossington Grammer School, a huge school where the girls and boys were separated. I enjoyed playing cricket and football and learnt to dance. When I was 13 I did junior coal mining, but my father didn’t want me to go into mining full time. I also worked on a farm harvesting. At 14 I was Head Boy and the Second World War had just broken out.

 

I have fond memories of Yorkshire and I like to chat about life there. I remember going to ‘The Pictures’ when a new cinema was built during the war. It was called The Hippodrome and about 5000 people went there a week. I went with my family regularly, there were always cowboy films, Westerns and musicals to watch. I particularly liked the cowboy films. 

 

 

 

I joined the Navy aged 16 as an Apprentice Motor Mechanic. My first ship was a minesweeper ship – it’s still a very dangerous job! I served in the Navy on three different minesweepers. I even went to Singapore, meeting Prince Phillip when he came to inspect my ship. I left the Navy in 1947 having achieved the rank of Chief Petty Officer. 

I then moved to Oxfordshire so I could get a job at the Morris Motors car factory with my Uncle Pete who lived in Marston, Oxford. When I moved to Marston I fell in love with the neighbour’s daughter, Aileen, and she would later become my wife. We were married in July 1949 and had three sons Peter, Paul and Phillip. Aileen and I always said it was an easy job labelling their school clothes as they were all P.Burton!

 

 

I worked in the car factory in Oxford for 34 years, leaving the job as a Superintendent of The Trim Shop in 1984. I then worked for a kitchen unit manufacturer in Abingdon for 10 years and Thames Valley Saws as a delivery driver. I eventually retired aged 86 having worked for a total of 72 years!

I have a very close relationship with my sons and my grandchildren and they all visit me regularly. I was very close to my wife; I like to talk about her and sometimes I forget that she has died.

I’ve had many hobbies and interests throughout my life including the snooker club, sports, animals and gardening. I’ve always liked cars too. As soon as I was anywhere near a car I knew my bearings and I knew how to make them go! 

Music is my biggest passion though. I was the lead singer in a band called The Wayferers. We met at the Munchery Farm Country Club and formed our band, going on to sing in clubs in and around Oxford.  One of my favourite songs is ‘Only you’ by The Platters

Joe’s wonderful story now continues with the support of our Merryfield colleagues. Joe says of living at Merryfield:


I like joining in with the activities at Merryfield, especially when singers visit, and participating in reading, painting, scrabble, bingo, and watching snooker and films. I like to go out to the pub for lunch and a pint.”

With Joe’s varied career background, we’ve been really keen to gather his thoughts on being in the military, singing in The Wayferers and what his favourite memories of Yorkshire are.

We caught up with Joe to find out more about his life and his thoughts:

 

Joe, what was life like living on a warship?

“Living on a warship was pretty rough! My memories of the Navy are that you cleaned anything that could be scrubbed and you looked shiny! You were always on high alert as you were constantly put on quick short runs of trouble. You never knew when you would get bombed – my area was a hot target for the Germans.”

What are your fondest memories of Doncaster? What was the best thing about growing up, living and working in Doncaster?

“It had a mighty good Air Force, a good town centre, a football pitch, rugby pitch and there was always something going on in the community, whether it was horse racing or special events. I remember when they opened the pictures (cinema) – it was the place to be! Doncaster was just an all-rounder of a town with lots of variety. It was a smashing town for me.”

What did you sing in The Wayferers band? 

“Oh yes the Wayfarers! [laughing]. All the songs we enjoyed singing were either Naval or what was popular at the time. People would stand up and shout song requests at us.”

Joe, having had three children, what would be your advice for parents today?

“Stay true to yourself and your personality. Try to better what your children are learning by sharing your own experiences. And know your place, especially in Yorkshire!” [laughing]

 

A huge thank you to Joe for sharing his story with us.

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business. Providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Bartletts, Community, Merryfield, Personalisation, Real life, Stone House, Wellbeing

The importance of reading for older adults at Peverel Court Care

The importance of reading for older adults at Peverel Court Care

 

Reading is one of the most important activities that older adults can engage in. It helps our residents to maintain friendships and keeps them mentally active and engaged. However, not everyone wants to read or finds reading to be easy for them.

 

Why reading matters for older adults

Reading is important for everyone; it helps us stay sharp, social and connected. For people living in care homes, reading is one way to help keep their minds engaged. And like anyone else, the choice of reading material for our residents will be led largely by their interests and their favourite genres. 

There are a lot of benefits to reading to older adults, especially those who are unable to read for themselves. At Peverel Court Care we have small in-house libraries in each of our homes. Our residents and staff help us to evolve the collection to ensure there is always something new to discover. It is also worth speaking with one of our Registered Managers as we also have a number of reading lists across our homes together with a writing and poetry club. 

 

Encouraging residents to read anything they choose

It’s never too late to start reading or to read more books. Reading can have a profound effect on mental health.  Reading may become more difficult as we age, so reading to older adults is one way to help keep them stimulated, entertained and engaged.

There are a lot of lists out there with recommendations on books to read, which cover a wide variety of topics. If you have an elderly family member or friend, give them some books you think they’d enjoy. Also, make sure you keep reading yourself. It can be fun to discuss what you’re reading with your relatives when you visit them.

 

Some places that might be helpful to consider

As not all care home residents are lucky enough to have access to so many books, the local library can also be a great place to start. Many libraries have reading lists for older adults and your loved one can get started on their reading list right away. 

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Events, Merryfield, Uncategorized, Wellbeing

Wheelchair Ice-skating

Merryfield House Nursing Home

Who?

“Operated by Fusion Lifestyle, our popular ice rink in the heart of Oxford can play host to fantastic activities including Skating sessions, Skate School, plus much more!”

https://www.fusion-lifestyle.com/centres/oxford-ice-rink/ 

Why?

Activity helps to sustain both physical and mental health. It is important that people living in care homes are able to maintain their interests and have opportunities to develop new ones. Here at Peverel Court Care, we regularly arrange exciting trips out for our residents to help improve their social, emotional and physical health. We want our residents to have a sense of freedom and independence, so it’s beneficial for them to go on day trips. This gives them the opportunity to meet and interact with new faces. Having the chance to socialise can help to improve social skills and behaviours, and reduce the feelings of loneliness.  

Outcome

Esther and Joe had never experienced being on the ice before, and by the look on their faces they were having “the time of their lives” with big smiles and lots of laughter. 

Esther tried pushing herself round for a while as she wanted to give it a try, then, a member of staff, Tim, offered to take over and give her a spin. He spun her round and they went faster round the rink! Esther really enjoyed this, she was fully engaged laughing and smiling, joking with Tim.

When Joe was asked if he wanted to go ice-skating, he said “oh wow. I don’t think I’ve ever done that before, ok”. When Joseph arrived, he was pointing and laughing saying “look at all that ice”. When Martha pushed Joe’s chair round the ice-rink, he was cheering and exclaimed “woo [laughing] well done dear!”

Residents benefit from social interaction and communication. Sharing their expertise and experiences which is enjoyable for them. 

Time spent by our activity teams in discovering an individual’s passions can help them to find events which each resident would enjoy. 

Testimonials 

Residents – Esther:

What did you think of the experience? “I thoroughly enjoyed myself, that was the best trip I’ve ever had!”

Would you like to experience it again? “Yes, I feel like a normal person again, I get to see the real world and get to do normal things.”  [laughing]

Resident – Joseph: 

When we asked Joe if he enjoyed himself and he said “I’m afraid I really did” [laughing] “it was lovely, thank you ever so much” [smiling]

Would you like to experience it again? “Yes, why not!” [smiling]

Dementia, Events, Merryfield

Puppy Visit Pawside Yoga – The benefits of Animal Therapy in Care Homes

Puppy Visit Pawside Yoga – Merryfield House Nursing Home.

Who?

https://pawsideyoga.co.uk/ 

Our Mission, 

We are a friendly + welcoming group who are passionate about sparking inner peace, conversation & connection through the ancient art of yoga to create a health and fitness class whilst adding our special element combining adorable puppies with creating the most blissful experience you’ve ever been to. We are committed to creating safe spaces that are inclusive & respectful of a diverse community.

Our Values,

  • LOVE is our underlying frequency. We have a genuine love for our yogis & we are passionate about uniting humanity through our classes. 
  • COMMUNITY Our people (team and students) are at the core of what we do, we strive to learn new perspectives by listening to, learning from & educating our community. 
  • LEARNING We use physical practice to spark conversation, curiosity & connection to the body, mind & soul. We aim to cultivate a sacred space for diverse bodies through intentional movement & mindfulness. 
  • THE INDIVIDUAL JOURNEY We aim to give you space to explore through the various aspects of yoga & then journey back with a newfound sense of self-connection & appreciation for yourself & others as well as being given the added element of the best cuddles ever with our gorgeous fur babies.

Why?

As care specialists, Peverel Court Care know how much of a positive effect animal therapy can have on those living with dementia. That’s why we welcomed a visit from Pawside Yoga to Merryfield House Nursing Home. 

Making invaluable connections and partnerships with organisations, such as Pawside Yoga, helps to enrich the lives of those residing with us, many of those living with dementia. Interaction with animals has well-documented benefits to older people mentally, emotionally and physically, by improving emotional, social and cognitive abilities. 

When visiting our homes, animals help improve the lives of our residents, including those living with dementia, by bettering motor skills, making them feel happier and lifted, encouraging interaction and also triggering reminiscing conversations. 

Testimonials 

Resident – Vera:

What did you think of the experience? – “Amazing, the puppies were so cute.”

Would you like to experience it again? – “Yes, definitely!”

Resident – Phillis:

What did you think of the experience? “I loved it, I held a few of them!” [laughing]

Would you like to experience it again? “Yes, I would.”

Resident – Joseph:

What did you think of the experience? “It was lovely, I really enjoyed their visit!” [laughing]

Would you like to experience it again? “Yes, of course, it was nice to meet them.”

 

Bartletts, Community, Events, Merryfield, Real life, Stone House, Wellbeing

A visit from Brush Party: how art benefits our residents

A visit from Brush Party: how art benefits our residents at Peverel Court Care

 

At Peverel Court Care, we’re always looking for new and exciting activities to stimulate and engage our residents. We also love working with local businesses as part of our commitment to our company value to Care For Our Communities. So when we found out about Aylesbury-based Brush Party, who run group painting events, we knew that we had found a match made in heaven.

 

Why is art used in care homes?

Art in care homes can provide many opportunities for residents to use their imagination, make connections and reminisce. Arts participation offers a chance for residents to express themselves, learn a new skill (or return to an old one), and form a stronger sense of personal identity that can sometimes be diminished in care.

 

A visit from Brush Party

We arranged for Brush Party to visit Stone House Nursing Care Home in Aylesbury, and our residents enjoyed a fantastic fun art-based event. Afterwards, we decided to speak to Becky Carpenter from Brush Party to find out more about the business and their visit to Stone House.

 

Tell us a little about your business and how you came to be doing what you’re doing.

”Brush Party is all about giving people the opportunity to get creative and learn how to paint through fun and easy to follow step by step tuition. Since starting in 2016, we have grown enormously and are so grateful for the opportunity to work with a diverse range of people.”

 

How did you come to work with Peverel Court Care?

”Our little red van was spotted driving around Aylesbury. When we were contacted by Peverel Court Care we couldn’t wait to work with you and take our Brush Party events down a new route.”

 

What are the benefits for older adults?

”There are so many benefits to painting – it’s stress relieving, fun and also hugely rewarding. It’s such a mindful activity and yet we often find that most people are fairly nervous when it comes to picking up a paintbrush. We love being able to put people at ease and allow themselves to get creative in a fun and supportive environment.”

 

What impact and outcomes did you see for the residents?

”A lot of the residents were incredibly engaged throughout the events and seemed to really enjoy the different aspects; from singing along to the music and occasional tapping of the feet to getting involved to really understand the techniques of the different brush strokes. When speaking with the residents during the session a lot had said that they hadn’t painted for years and that it brought back fond memories for them. Some told stories of family members who were artists too and that was really lovely to hear.”

 

How did you find spending time with our residents?

”They have all been so welcoming and it’s been lovely to get to know them and listen to the stories. It’s also been amazing to see how pleased they have been with their paintings at the end of the sessions.”

 

What did you think of the art created by our residents?

”There has been a lot of fabulous artwork created by the residents, there have been lots of vibrant colours and bold brush strokes that have made each one so unique and individual.”

 

Did you hear about the art exhibition we held at Stone House after your visit?

“The staff did tell us about the art exhibition and we think this is such a fab way to showcase the wonderful work created by the residents!”

 

We asked some of our lovely residents for their feedback on the Brush Party visits:

What did you think of the experience?

Joan: “I really enjoyed it, it was relaxing!”

Rosemary: “Yes, I thought it was fun!”

 

And would you like to take part again?

Rosemary: Yes, I would! I need to improve my painting skills” [laughing]

 

After the initial visit from Brush Party, we held an exhibition at Stone House of the artworks created by our residents.

 

Stone House Art Exhibition

 

Brush Party now regularly visit all three of our award-winning care homes in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire as part of a continuing partnership.

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Bartletts, Best Care Practices, Business, Care & Technology, Care Awards, Care Management, Community, Leadership & Management, Merryfield, Personalisation, Real life, Social Care & Society, Social Care Strategy, Stone House, Wellbeing, Workforce Development

How choice is at the heart of happiness and delivering high-quality adult care provision

How choice is at the heart of happiness and delivering high-quality adult care provision at Peverel Court Care

 

At Peverel Court, one of our core values as a business is Service Quality and we aim to provide an unsurpassed service that delivers exceptional care to our residents and their families.

In order to achieve this, we aim to nurture a culture of positivity within the business. We are approaching this by focusing on achieving continuous progress in small increments, rather than through an immediate transition to perfection. We’re also committed to the principle that “choice equals happiness” and that is why we ensure that choice is at the heart of decision making across the organisation.

 

Happiness of our care home staff

Fundamental to delivering a culture of positivity in the business is the happiness of our staff.

Therefore, at Peverel Court Care we have implemented a number of initiatives aimed at supporting our team and giving them flexibility in their working lives. This includes rewards and recognition programmes, career development pathways and our Employee Assistance Programme. The Employee Assistance Programme is a confidential employee benefit designed to help staff deal with any personal and work-related issues that might be affecting them. Whether they are struggling at home or at work, our helpline is available 24/7, 365 days a year so they will always have the support they need.

We also provide our team with the Employee Support Hub, powered by Health Assured, which gives them access to qualified therapists over the phone or via live chat.

Peverel Court Care have also partnered with Perkbox Medical to provide employees with 24/7 access to an online GP as we appreciate how tricky it can be to schedule appointments around working hours. The online GP service allows employees to interact with a certified doctor, via app or website from anywhere with internet, or Wi-Fi access. Employees can book an appointment and be seen within minutes, ask for advice, as well as receiving prescriptions and referrals, all at a time of their choosing.

 

Choice, Happiness and Productivity

Research by Oxford University’s Saïd Business School, in collaboration with British multinational telecoms firm BT, has found a conclusive link between happiness and productivity.

The authors of the report stated that while the link between happiness and productivity has previously been discussed often, their study provides the first causal evidence for this relationship.

“There seems to be considerable room for improvement in the happiness of employees while they are at work. While this is clearly in the interest of workers themselves, our analysis suggests it is also in the interests of their employers.

There has never been such strong evidence. We found that when workers are happier, they work faster by making more calls per hour worked and, importantly, convert more calls to sales.”

Professor Jan-Emmanue De Neve, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

 

8 Factors That Determine Workplace Happiness and Productivity

A recent article suggested 8 key factors which help to determine workplace happiness and, as a consequence, productivity. These were:

  • A Healthy Workplace Environment
  • Team Building Activities
  • A Good Work-Life Balance
  • Workplace Flexibility
  • Appreciation
  • Growth Potential
  • Autonomy
  • Transparency

 

Happiness in our care homes

At Peverel Court Care, we are embracing the advice of experts and attempting to provide choice and support to ensure that our workforce remains happy, committed and productive.

As a result of these and other initiatives over many years, we are delighted to retain a long-serving, experienced and dedicated staff across our award-winning care homes in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

And it is our team who utilise their experience, expertise and positivity to continue to deliver exceptional care to our residents. Through supporting our staff and ensuring that they are happy and have choices in their work, we are also ensuring the happiness and ability to choose for our residents.

That is one of the many reasons why at the 2022 carehome.co.uk Awards, Peverel Court Care were again recognised as one of the Top 20 Rated Small Care Home Groups in the UK. We couldn’t have achieved that without our staff and would like to express our gratitude for their continued hard work and dedication.

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Bartletts, Care Awards, Merryfield, Stone House

Lola Vintage Ice Cream Van Activity

To celebrate Peverel Court Care being recognised by carehome.co.uk as a Top 20 Care Home Group in the UK in their 2022 Awards, we hired the Lola vintage ice cream van to visit us to serve delicious ice cream to both our residents and staff. 

 

Lola, the vintage ice cream van (link to: https://www.lolaicecreamvan.co.uk/), was born in 1973. She’s been serving delicious ice creams and waffles for private events, weddings, anniversaries, special birthdays and corporate events ever since. They cater for all dietary requirements, with treats suitable for vegetarians, dairy intolerance and gluten free. 

Reminiscing about the past

Our resident Christopher James was one of many of our residents who thoroughly enjoyed trying various ice creams from the vintage van.

Christopher reminisced about working as a cold store porter for Wall’s ice cream in the 1970’s. He worked 3 summers in a row between July and September for £20 a week! He laughed explaining: “£20 a week was a lot back then!”

Christopher enjoyed the quiet village areas as he travelled between north and south Oxfordshire delivering stock. He said he preferred the ice cream back then: “it’s not as creamy as it once was!”

 

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Bartletts, Best Care Practices, Business, Care & Technology, Care Management, Community, Design, Future of Care, Leadership & Management, Merryfield, Real life, Social Care & Society, Social Care Strategy, Stone House, Workforce Development, Workforce Intelligence

In search of continuous progress in care

In search of continuous progress in care at Peverel Court Care

 

At Peverel Court Care, we embrace the opportunity to continuously improve our business and, as a result, the lives of our residents and staff. In this post, we wanted to explore further what a continuous improvement model is, and how our commitment is driving positive results.

Whilst there are a number of different methodologies for identifying and implementing opportunities for improvement, these all share a number of core principles. It is these upon which we have based our model for advancing the way in which we operate.

 

The core principles of continuous improvement

Beyond that, we have taken the following core principles upon which to base our programme of continuous improvement for our already award-winning care homes in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire:

As the first to test the GP Connect extension within Nourish, we will be shaping the way care environments interact with GP services and taking a significant step towards a joined-up care environment. We look forward to seeing how our care teams engage with GP Connect and the impact it will have on care practice.

  • Small steps rather than giant leaps are more likely to achieve progress. We have acknowledged that huge changes to the way we run the business are going to be much scarier and more time consuming than smaller changes. So we’re focusing our efforts on identifying opportunities that can be implemented much more quickly, in order to ensure constant progression. This allows fast improvements in the day-to-day lives of our residents and staff, rather than strategic shifts that will take much more time to realise.
  • The thoughts, ideas and experiences of our employees are invaluable. Our leadership team understands that no-one understands the challenges and opportunities in the business better than the people who work in it everyday. That’s why we want to know which elements of their jobs and our processes, activities and communications are sticking points for our team. This helps us to identify opportunities for us to make improvements that will benefit our staff and residents every day, and help us to make constant progress towards a better business.
  • Incremental changes can usually be implemented very cost-effectively. Our leadership team has noted that when receiving feedback from the team, the focus is often on smaller changes which can be implemented without a huge amount of expense, yet can make a big impact. Indeed, it has been noted that many ideas from employees involve simplifying processes rather than complicating them. This is a great way to ensure that every step we make adds value to our residents and staff, and reduces wasted time and effort. This insight from employees is therefore fundamental to our continuous improvement programme.
  • Encouraging employees to own and drive our continuous improvement program. Whilst appreciating the importance of the key insights we can gain from our team, and the way we can utilise these to progress the business, we’re asking for even more from our team. We want them to be proud of the business in which they work, and therefore believe that it’s important for them to not only buy into what we’re doing, but to proactively contribute to the direction of our improvement programme.
  • Reflecting on our improvement. Ensuring a constant feedback loop is essential for the success of our continuous improvement programme. Open communication throughout the improvement process is critical to ensuring that the changes we make are making the desired improvements. We know that not every idea, or the way we attempt to make change, will be a success. Therefore, keeping track of and communicating our successes and failures will help us to learn more and improve even our continuous improvement programme.
  • Measuring the success of improvement. It’s vitally important that we don’t just make changes, but that we measure their effectiveness. This might be in the form of time or cost savings, but equally it could be in terms of quality of life improvements for our staff or residents. By measuring the impact that our changes make in the pursuit of improvement, we’re better able to determine whether that change could also be applied successfully to other similar challenges in the business.

 

Creating a sound continuous improvement programme

A sound continuous improvement programme should be able to demonstrate a number of features which Peverel Court Care’s leadership team aim to embrace:

  • Baseline – the current situation the service is trying to change
  • Planning – improvements and the expected benefit to the care recipient
  • Monitoring – systems to monitor a new process or activity during its implementation
  • Evaluation – systems to monitor a process or activity once it has been implemented, which should help ensure its sustainability and capture the actual improvements.

The following framework has been utilised to help drive and support the process and to ensure that all changes we make are fully aligned to our business strategy and values:

  • Care recipient focus
  • Strategic planning and implementation
  • Involvement of key stakeholders; crucially ensuring that staff feeling involved and listened to
  • Innovation – particularly in terms of gathering ideas from staff
  • Regular monitoring and evaluation.

Progress to date from our continuous improvement programme

At Peverel Court Care, our continuous improvement programme has already been in place for a little while. So we wanted to share a couple of great examples of how it’s already working for us as we seek to improve the day-to-day lives of our residents and staff.

One recent example came from Hillary, one of our Activities Coordinators, who proposed a number of suggestions, including “Around the world through takeaway”, “Virtual family time” and “Glam day ladies club”. There were some brilliant ideas, and we have already incorporated suggestions such as the bespoke takeaway evenings, which take our residents to different places around the world via their cuisine. 

We are also implementing quarterly reverse mentoring sessions with our CEO. These sessions are constructive and fun, and allow employees to tell the CEO what they would do differently and why. We’ve found this opportunity has improved insight and communication across management and employees.

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Bartletts, Best Care Practices, Business, Care Home Recruitment, Care Management, Community, Future of Care, Leadership & Management, Merryfield, Real life, Stone House, Workforce Development, Workforce Intelligence

How our carers feedback helps us stay on top of running a leading care business

How our carers feedback helps us stay on top of running a leading care business at Peverel Court Care

 

At Peverel Court Care, we know that whilst we have an excellent reputation for the care that we provide to our residents and for the way we look after our staff, there are always opportunities to do even more. That’s why we partnered with local business WorkBuzz last year, to conduct regular staff surveys to obtain carer feedback and to identify areas for further improvement.

 

The surveys help gather real-time feedback from staff across our care homes, gathering vital understanding, and helping to build a more inclusive culture. All survey responses are anonymous and they are sent twice a year to the entire team, allowing us time to formulate and implement action plans, and gain vital regular insight.

 

Benefits of employee feedback in the care sector

Whilst most care businesses will be quick to acknowledge that feedback from residents and their families is crucial in driving improvements in service delivery, taking regular feedback from carers and other employees is equally important.

In post pandemic and post Brexit Britain, the recruitment and retention of staff is a universal challenge for care businesses. Ensuring that we’re listening to our employees, and then working to address their concerns and implement their suggestions will help to not only improve the services we deliver, but also to reduce the friction that our team experiences in their day-to-day work. In turn, this then helps us to better retain our talented team and to make their working lives, in some small way, less stressful and challenging wherever we can.

nibusinessinfo.co.uk is the official online channel for business advice and guidance in Northern Ireland. In a recent article they described how “Encouraging your staff to voice their ideas and contribute to finding better ways of doing things can have a positive impact on your business performance”.

Amongst the key business benefits of encouraging staff feedback, opinions and ideas, they identified:

  • Better awareness – you will be more aware of what is going on at every level of your business
  • Increased productivity – it helps to increase employee engagement, motivation and productivity
  • Business solutions – you may find solutions to business problems that otherwise may not have been established
  • Innovation – it encourages effective decision making and drives innovation
  • Valued contribution – it helps employees to feel that their contribution to the business is valued
  • Staff retention – it encourages employee retention and reduces staff turnover because employees feel more valued and allied to your business and its goals
  • Adaptability – improved communication helps with organisational change and cultural change

 

What changes have been implemented as a result of staff feedback?

In addition to the scores and carer feedback, we received several anonymised comments in particular that were extremely insightful and which we have been able to take action on to make rapid improvements to the way in which we operate the business day-to-day.

Overall, there was a theme in the feedback with people commenting on staffing numbers during covid. We recognise it was an incredibly challenging time and we recognise in particular that the most important resource in any care service is the team. That’s why we know that not only our growth, but our ongoing performance, will ultimately be determined by the effectiveness of our recruitment strategies and implementation.

In addition to the scores and feedback, we received several anonymised comments in particular that were extremely insightful and which we have been able to take action on to make rapid improvements to the way in which we operate the business day-to-day.

Laura will assist us all with the implementation of the recruitment and retention strategy, assist the in-house recruitment and retention schemes, work with the local community, digital media partners, and industry contacts to ensure Peverel Court Care is a leading care employer in the local market; attracting and retaining high quality candidates with caring values.

Laura will also assist in developing defined career pathways, and will work with staff across our award-winning care homes in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire to refine our rewards and recognition package.

We will also be implementing new software that promotes our employee referral programme, providing our staff with direct access to refer candidates and secure vouchers, making this quicker and easier for them to do.

Other projects we are working on that will assist employees include introducing an electronic rota system. Again, we’ve listened to their feedback and noted the challenges they’ve raised and believe this will streamline processes around payroll and annual leave. An electronic system will provide staff with more transparency prior to receiving their pay, simplifying shift work, and minimising errors. We are currently reviewing suppliers and hope to implement this new solution in the coming months.

There are also other projects we hope to implement in the next 6-12 months based on feedback received, including updating our nurse call systems, and electronic medication administration.

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

Best Care Practices, Business, Care & Technology, Care Management, Community, Future of Care, Leadership & Management, Merryfield, Personalisation, Real life, Social Care & Society, Tech

Merryfield piloting GP Connect for Nourish

Merryfield piloting GP Connect for Nourish at Peverel Court Care

 

For Peverel Court Care, any opportunity to help advance the alignment between health and social care is one not to be missed. So when our digital care management software provider Nourish approached us asking if we would beta test their new GP Connect integration, we were delighted to help.

 

Merryfield, our nursing care home in Witney, Oxfordshire, was selected as the ideal place to beta test the new solution. By undertaking the pilot programme, Merryfield became the first care home in the country to access GP Connect via the Nourish platform.

Following a successful trial at Bartlett’s, we had rolled out Nourish to our homes as our chosen digital care plan solution in late 2020. More information about Nourish and the benefits we’ve seen can be found in our article on the digital care plan roll out.

 

GP Connect on Nourish

GP Connect is a service that allows GP practices and authorised clinical staff to share and view GP practice clinical information and data between IT systems, quickly and efficiently. The service makes patient medical information available to clinicians when and where they need it leading to improvements in the care they’re able to provide.

“The introduction of GP Connect is a huge step towards delivering interoperability and establishing a connected care environment within health and social care. Nourish customers will be able to review relevant and timely medical notes for people they support, leading to better continuity of care, and resulting in safer, improved outcomes. I look forward to seeing the positive impact this delivers for care teams and those they support.”

Nuno Almeida, Founder and CEO of Nourish Care

With the support of our digital partner Nourish, we now have access to the GP records and medical notes for our residents, facilitating more informed decision making. We will have access to clinical history, medications, allergies, history of immunisations and more. This valuable information will enhance the work we do and surface the right information at the right time.

As the first to test the GP Connect extension within Nourish, we will be shaping the way care environments interact with GP services and taking a significant step towards a joined-up care environment. We look forward to seeing how our care teams engage with GP Connect and the impact it will have on care practice.

 

 

GP Connect feedback from our team

As a business, we are always looking for ways to put our residents first, to provide them with the best possible service, and to make a positive contribution to the community. We believe that beta testing the GP Connect extension in Nourish aligns with all of those values.

“By using GP Connect we now have a better understanding of our resident’s needs. Accessing the GP record helps us to understand the ‘what’ and the ‘why’ around an individual’s needs. If there are concerns regarding medication, we can review the record and make more informed decisions. GP Connect is particularly helpful when admitting a new resident, by having this information at hand we can provide the best possible care from the start. Before GP Connect we would wait for an email or phone call from the GP. Now we can access the relevant information instantly, which is great!”

Kefas Jeshua, Peverel Court

 

“By switching on the GP Connect extension in Nourish we have key clinical information at our fingertips, helping us to minimise adverse events, providing better support. This information really helps!”

Francisca Torres, Peverel Court

 

GP Connect – Nourish beta test

It’s not just our team that are seeing the benefits of the pilot GP Connect programme:

“Peverel Court was the first to participate in Beta testing for the GP Connect extension. Preet, Kefas and the team were very engaged with the trial and were extremely committed and helpful. A driver for enabling GP Connect was to support new residents coming to the home, to access all their key information beforehand so the team could make the resident feel as comfortable as possible. It was great to see Peverel Court testing the latest system and striving for continuous improvement within their service.”

Elise Featley – Product Marketing Manager at Nourish Care

 

About Peverel Court Care

Peverel Court Care is a group of one residential and two nursing homes, located in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire: Bartlett’s Residential Care Home and Stone House Nursing Home in Aylesbury, and Merryfield House Nursing Home in Witney. We are a long-standing family business, providing exceptional, personalised care, delivered by talented and compassionate people, in exclusive and idyllic settings.

With happiness at the heart of our homes, we recognise and respect the contribution made by our residents to society during their lifetimes. Valued by residents and their families; our reputation, investment in each property, and approach to appointing and developing our staff makes each home unique and the benchmark in premium care.

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