A FORMER nurse has praised staff and management for improvements to a care home criticised by health watchdogs.
The Care Inspectorate had previously criticised the home for its quality of services.
The daughter of a current resident at the Pentland Hill Care Home, in Edinburgh said she is relieved by the transformation at the home.
Dorothy McPartlin spent eight years as a nurse caring for people with dementia with the NHS, before retiring.
Her 93-year-old mother has been a resident since 2011, when the family secured a council-funded care package.
Now she has called for the efforts of the new team to be recognised, to allow the many changes to properly take root so the care service can continue to improve
Mrs McPartlin said: “I have never been shy about complaining and demanding change and there is no doubt things were pretty poor for a while.
“However, I will also give praise where it is due and I really believe that is what is called for now.
“There has been a remarkable change at Pentland Hill and the care staff have worked incredibly hard. It is time that was recognised.
“There was a time for all the endless negative criticism, but it is a different place now, with different management and many new staff.
“Now it needs to be given a chance for all of those changes to take root properly, to make sure the improvements are for the long term and the home keeps getting better.”
Mrs McPartlin’s mother, a grandmother of six and a great grandmother of two, was diagnosed with dementia seven years ago.
Thanks to her nursing experience, her daughter spotted the early warning signs.
The progressive illness affected her mother’s ability to speak, robbing her of her memory and eventually left her needing 24 hour care.
For a time her granddaughter moved into her home to help look after her, but when it became evident she needed round the clock attention, the family decided to seek a nursing home place.
Once her mother was settled into one of the dementia units at the home the family began to notice problems with staff and management.
The family felt there were too few staff to properly care for the residents and poor management which resulted in a chaotic atmosphere.
A formal Improvement Notice was issued to the home and Bupa, which operates the home responded by appointing an entirely new management team.
Mrs McPartlin added: “There were times when I was unhappy with what I was witnessing, particularly with my background in dementia nursing. I complained consistently.
“When the Care Inspectorate gave the home a low grading I wasn’t surprised at all.
“In fact I was relieved that someone else with real influence was acknowledging that there had to be change.”
“Huge changes have taken place and the atmosphere is completely different.
“The care staff say they are now getting the chance to spend much more quality time with residents.
“The staff are happy, the residents are happy. The changes I have seen are remarkable, particularly in the range of activities for residents.”
“The new home manager is very proactive, while the new unit manager is very approachable and I feel confident that I am being listened to and my comments are being taken on board.”
Kirsty Dace, Bupa’s director in Scotland, appointed the turnaround team at the care home and has led the process.
She said: “The management has been completely replaced and we’ve introduced sweeping changes across all aspects of the home. We can now say with confidence this is a safe and well-run care home.
“It is extremely gratifying to hear that the efforts and hard work of the team have been recognised by Mrs McPartlin and other relatives, as well as by our residents. We will continue to work with them closely and are determined to keep improving.”