Registered Nursing Home Association

News Releases

Call for chancellor to protect vulnerable older people
14th December, 2009
Nursing home leaders have challenged chancellor of the exchequer Alistair Darling to explain why nursing and residential care services for older people have been treated as undeserving of protection against cuts in public services. The RNHA intends to write to the chancellor to ask why older people have been discriminated against in this way and will call on him to cancel his planned reduction in expenditure on places for older people who need 24-hour care.
RNHA welcomes independent report on antipsychotic prescribing in dementia care
7th December, 2009
The RHNA has welcomed Professor Sube Banerjee's recently published report on the use of antipsychotic medication for people with dementia and, in particular, his recommendation that Primary Care Trusts in England should expand their community mental health care teams so that they can provide better support to care home staff managing dementia patients. Said RNHA chief executive officer Frank Ursell: "Professor Banerjee acknowledges in his report what we in the nursing home sector have been saying for many years – that the development of non-pharmacological behaviour management strategies for dementia patients requires additional investment which, hitherto, has not been provided."
Call for regulator to match care providers' performance against resources
2nd December, 2009
The RNHA says that reports by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) on nursing and residential care homes should in future seek to correlate the standards of service they provide to their residents with the amount of funding they receive from local authorities. It follows publication this week of a major report by the CQC on the performance of adult social care providers, including nursing homes, and a further report on the performance of English local authorities that commission and monitor social care provided to their populations.
RNHA backs Care Quality Commission's call for improved communication between hospitals and GPs on patients' medicines
6th November, 2009
The RNHA is calling for greater consistency in the information provided about patients' medicines by hospitals and GPs when they are transferred to nursing homes from hospital or admitted directly from their own homes. This follows a report just published by the Care Quality Commission that looked closely at the management of patients' medicines and found a range of problems due largely to inadequate communication between hospitals and GP practices.
RCN survey shows nursing home staff working well under pressure
5th November, 2009
The RNHA says the findings of a recent RCN survey of nurses' employment and morale suggest that nursing home staff are working well under pressure. Figures from the survey suggest that around twice as many nurses employed in care homes as on NHS older people's wards agree that there are sufficient staff on duty to provide a good standard of care and meet patients' needs. This is despite the fact that the same survey found a higher number of patients per registered nurse in care homes (18.3 per nurse during the day and 26.4 at night) than on an NHS older person's ward (11.3).
Study should dispel myths on medicines in care homes
6th October, 2009
A recent study should help to dispel some of the myths and misconceptions about the use of medicines in nursing and residential care homes, the RNHA has claimed. The study by researchers at five UK universities, published this month in Quality and Safety in Healthcare, suggests that most of the problems lie outside the control of the care homes themselves.
Government's Green Paper on social care funding ignores one half of the vital equation
28th July, 2009
The RNHA believes the government's Green Paper on the future funding of social care in England does not address the fundamental issue of whether or not any of the new systems proposed will generate enough money to pay for the amount and quality of care that people need. Click 'more' below for more details and to view a special Social Care Bulletin published by the Department of Health which summarises the proposals and explains the consultation process.
RNHA backs call for greater investment in dementia care training
8th July, 2009
The RNHA has welcomed a call by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia for greater investment in training for those who care for people affected by the condition. But the association warns that raising standards of dementia care depends not only on training but also on extra resources to fund more staff and better pay.
Welcome for new care regulator's pledge on dialogue
12th June, 2009
The RNHA has welcomed a pledge by the new Care Quality Commission (CQC) to enter into 'a continual constructive dialogue' with providers of long-term care services, including nursing homes. The RNHA hopes it marks the start of a new era in which those who regulate care services and those who provide them will work together for the benefit of those who use the services.
Local authority condemned for 'bully boy' tactics
18th May, 2009
Wirral Council has been accused of using 'bully boy' tactics that could damage the care and well-being of older people in its area. The RNHA has condemned an ultimatum from Wirral Council that will force local independent and voluntary sector care homes to accept an immediate 1.3% cut in the level of fees the local authority was paying last year to cover the cost of 24-hour care provided by those homes to older people. The damage is compounded, the RNHA claims, by the fact that Wirral Council is not only backdating the cut to the beginning of April but is also unilaterally tearing up a contract it had with local care homes to increase their funding for 2009/10 in line with the retail price index.
Low pay in social care sector could hold back further improvements, RNHA warns
12th May, 2009
The RNHA has welcomed an acknowledgement by the Department of Health that low levels of pay in the social care sector are a cause for concern and is calling for action to address the problem in both now and for the long term.
RNHA reacts to Health Secretary's comments on 'an inconsistent, incoherent social care system'
11th May, 2009
Reacting to a recent comment attributed to Health Secretary Alan Johnson that, in general, 'the social care system in England is inconsistent, incoherent and no longer sustainable', the RNHA says it begs the question as to whether the government has been pursuing the right policies.
Call to shake up star ratings and stop paying 'Trabant' prices for BMW-level care
22nd April, 2009
Two key messages to have emerged from the RNHA's 2009 national roadshow are that nursing homes want a more consistent star rating system and a fairer system of funding that meets the actual costs incurred in looking after highly dependent people 24 hours a day.
Survey highlights need to review care home star ratings
31st March, 2009
Star ratings systems for assessing care services are by necessity a rather blunt instrument and should not be relied upon as the sole arbiter of quality, the RNHA believes. Commenting on a Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) report on a survey to find out what people think about the star ratings system introduced last year, the RNHA said it painted a less than convincing picture about the robustness of that system.
RNHA calls for extra investment in dementia care services
20th March, 2009
Reacting to a report by Laing and Buisson, the RNHA said that years of under-investment in dementia care by the government, NHS and local authorities had resulted in services being stretched to the limit.
RNHA lambasts MP for smear tactics
11th March, 2009
Following statements by Norman Lamb MP about just 169 out of 10,377 care homes for older people in England that were found by inspectors to have major hygiene and infection control failings, the RNHA said it was highly regrettable that he had completely overlooked the sterling work done by the vast majority of homes to raise standards and deliver high quality care.
Enhanced specialist mental health support should help improve dementia care
4th February, 2009
Responding to the government's national dementia strategy, the RNHA has welcomed proposals to strengthen specialist NHS mental health support to independent nursing homes, including assessment of patients' needs on admission and six-monthly reviews.
RNHA welcomes new regulator's commitment to fairness and consistency
3rd February, 2009
The RNHA has welcomed a commitment from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to be both consistent and fair in assessing how well individual nursing homes and other care providers are complying with statutory regulations and standards.
RNHA Care - Academy for Induction Training
2nd February, 2009
Welcome to RNHA Care-Academy which has been created to help you deliver training and development programmes such as Induction and Mandatory Refresher course.
Safeguarding vulnerable adults
1st February, 2009
The Department of Health has launched a consultation on future measures to safeguard vulnerable adults. RNHA members may wish to access the consultation materials, consider their implications and respond directly with their own views on the way ahead.
Nursing homes deserve credit for improved performance
29th January, 2009
Nursing homes should be congratulated on the significant improvements they have made over the past five years in meeting national minimum care standards, RNHA chief executive officer Frank Ursell believes.
Care for older people could be the next credit crunch victim
27th January, 2009
The RNHA is warning that older people needing full-time care may be the next victims of the credit crunch if council social services departments freeze, cut or offer below inflation increases in the funding of nursing home places.

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