Health & Safety

Older people at risk of CO poisoning according to GST’s latest Downstream Incident Data Report

The Gas Safety Trust (GST) today (26 October 2017) published the Downstream Incident Data Report statistics for 2015-16. The report collates data relating to accidental carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning incidents in Great Britain (GB) associated with the use of mains natural gas and piped Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) in the home. Since 2011, information, albeit less extensive than that for mains gas, has also been collected concerning CO incidents associated with the domestic use of solid fuel and oil.

This year the report recorded 20 incidents, including five fatalities. Four of which were over 60 years of age and related to piped natural gas, and one 18-year-old male caused by an LPG space heater. All five fatal incidents occurred between September 2015 and January 2016.

Less than half of care home staff say they have bariatric facilities to look after obese residents

One in 10 care home staff have had to turn down obese residents due to lack of bariatric facilities
With one in four British adults now obese in older age, new figures from, the leading care home reviews website, reveal that only 39% of care home staff say they have the bariatric facilities to look after obese residents, with one in 10 care home staff (13%) having to turn them away due to lack of these services.
The figures have been sourced from a survey completed by care home owners, managers and staff as part of the Summer Survey, and the term ‘bariatric’ relates to people who weigh more than 25 stone.
Davina Ludlow, Chair of, said:

National drive to reduce medication errors in care homes

medication tolley

Omnicell is calling for care homes in the UK to look again at the way they administer medication to residents and patients. It’s astounding to think that some homes are still relying on original pack dispensing alone to administer complex medication regimens to dozens of residents. It’s an unsafe and unnecessary practice that the industry needs to work together to tackle.

Making resources last, whilst reducing infection risk

Making resources last, whilst reducing infection risk

Improving waste management procedures is a serious issue that care home facilities need to tackle. Cromwell Polythene Managing Director, James Lee explores what can be done.


The UK government forecasts that, between 2015 and 2020 the number of people aged over 85 will increase by 18% (300,000 people). While this is a triumph when it comes to life expectancy, many of these people may require some form of long-term care, including community and residential care.


Managing falls: how can they be avoided?


Dr James Frith (pictured), NIHR Clinician Scientist Fellow, Institute of Cellular Medicine, Newcastle University, and Lead Educator on 'Ageing Well: Falls’ on the FutureLearn platform, discusses why it’s important to recognise the risks associated with falls and gives his top tips on how to reduce the risk of falling.

Why are falls important and why should we do our best to avoid them?

Managing legionella in care homes’ hot water systems


With outbreaks of Legionnaires’ disease still being reported in Britain, and indeed further afield, one risk likely to be at the forefront of the industry’s mind is the spread of the bacteria behind the disease.

Found commonly in water, legionella bacteria multiply where nutrients are available and temperatures are between 20-45°C. Warm standing water is the ideal growing environment; anything cooler than 20°C and the bacteria lay dormant, while anything above 60°C and they do not survive.

Legionnaires’ disease is a potentially fatal type of pneumonia, contracted by inhaling airborne water droplets containing viable legionella bacteria. Such droplets can be created, for example, by hot water systems, atomisers or hydrotherapy baths.

Designing safer systems of care delivery for older patients

A new study published in Age & Ageing, the scientific journal of the British Geriatrics Society, identified incidents when poor communication between secondary and primary care and failures within primary care led to patient harm and highlights how improved communications systems could help protect older patients from harm. Timely electronic transfer of information with standardised formats could reduce medication and clinical decision-making incidents. Electronic alerts and expanded use of bar-coding are examples of systems which could tackle drug administration incidents.


5 Benefits of Owning a Mobility Scooter

 5 Benefits of Owning a Mobility Scooter

If you feel like your mobility is limiting your quality of life, a mobility scooter could be ideal for you. Life should be about getting out and living, not being stuck at home or relying on lifts! Scooters can help make life simpler, there’s a wide range of models available with different features for different needs.

Keep on reading to learn about 5 of the many benefits of owning a mobility scooter.


Feeling of independence

Diabetes: an educational service for the care sector in East Anglia 


In the “My Diabetes, My Care” report by the Care Quality Commission (updated 20 September 2016) one of the recommendations was that “diabetes training is made available for care workers to help them to fully support and care for people with diabetes”. 

Last Autumn “Panorama” (3 October 2016) and “Inside Out East” (24 October 2016) chose to cover the topic of diabetes and the impact this long-term condition has on lives if not adequately managed. Poorly treated/managed diabetes may lead to long term health problems (known as complications) such as amputation (toes, feet and even legs), kidney dialysis, blindness to name a few. Families have the right to expect that those caring for their loved one have the necessary knowledge and skills to do so. 

MRSA: still a threat?

MRSA: still a threat?

Superbugs, which are resistant to many antibiotics, have had a high media profile for at least the last 10 years. In the UK, they became a political issue too. In the run-up to the 2005 general election, the management of superbug MRSA – a specific strain of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacterium – was a key policy battleground, following alarming headlines about epidemic-level rates and closed hospital wards.


Well Careplus achieves impressive growth servicing 29 new care homes

Well Careplus achieves impressive growth servicing 29 new care homes

Kingsley Healthcare is the latest national care home chain to sign up to the Well Careplus medicine management service, ensuring 1,000 more patients are benefiting from the safe and personalised care the system offers.
Kingsley Healthcare, an award-winning care home provider, now operate 29 luxury residential homes all over the country.  The company is dedicated to person-centred care and the highest standards of patient safety, and the recent implementation of Well Careplus further strengthens the company’s offering.

Top tips to avoid falls and boost confidence

Norman Niven, chief executive of

As many as three adults over the age of 65 have a serious fall every year, and around 70% of those fear falling again, according to health and care technology experts

When someone takes a nasty fall it can have a huge psychological impact, as well as a physical one, but there are steps you can take to restore the confidence of your residents and reduce the risk of them falling again. 

Chief executive of Norman Niven has a wealth of advice for people looking at ways to help make a difference. Norman Niven, chief executive of

Medication Mistakes Put Patients' Lives At Risk: Carers' Drug Blunders A Serious Safety Issue


Life-threatening errors are unwittingly being made by carers and relatives looking after elderly and ill patients. Patients who live at home are often given the wrong drugs or no drugs at all. A recent study reported that more than 90% of carers looking after people at home make potentially deadly errors with their medicines. Experts fear that thousands are being put in danger because drug administration at home is rarely monitored, potentially becoming a serious patient safety issue and another demand on the NHS.

Calls made for stricter guidelines around cancer care after nurses reveal shocking symptoms

MindMetre's Paul Lindsell talks of shocking find

An independent research organisation is calling for more rigorous guidelines around the administration of cytotocix drugs following an alarming discovery in the the healthcare sector. 

The recent study from MindMetre has revealed that chemotherapy nurses are at risk from exposure to hazardous drugs, with some reporting significant symptoms as a result of their work, including hair loss and an unusually high rate of miscarriage. 

In addition to investigating claims about the effects, the Mindmetre report also considers whether the measurement and monitoring of exposure levels is sufficiently rigorous. 

Resolve Care: how to achieve two CQC Outstanding Ratings

Resolve Care: how to achieve two CQC Outstanding Ratings

Since the Care Quality Commission (CQC) changed its inspection process, few learning disability care homes have achieved an outstanding rating. These ratings are notoriously difficult to come by, with less than 5% of the total number of inspected organisations achieving this rating. So, how has Resolve achieved this distinction in both their homes? Owners David King and Anne Graham explain.


Giving people the best chance

At Resolve, the ethos is on giving the residents the best possible life. All the residents have autism and/or a learning disability and a history of offending behaviour, with spells in hospital or prison. Most have had limited opportunities and meaningful life experiences.

New training programme launched to help care homes improve infection control

Care homes across the UK can get up to speed on infection control, continence care and health and safety thanks to a new training programme. 

Infection control product specialist Cairn Care has launched the online tool that provides homes with up-to-date training materials that can be downloaded at any time of the day or night. 

Resources include advice on cleaning schedule, infection control plans, advice posters and basic workplace training tools. 

It also contains useful information to help care home customers use Cairn Care’s products correctly and effectively.

The training hub forms only part of Cairn Care’s new website which also comprises of a new online store dedicated to the UK residential care sector in the UK. 

Alzheimer's Advance



Breakthrough findings demonstrate a possible target and potential drug treatment to restore memory loss and extend life span in mice with neurodegeneration.


“We have treated mice with a new type of drug, and found that these drugs can not only improve symptoms of brain degeneration, such as cognitive decline, but can also extend the life-span of these terminally-sick mice. Our study opens up avenues for researchers to look at new drugs that treat the symptoms of Alzheimer’s and also slow disease progression”

Professor Andrew Tobin



Bennett Security Movement Sensor

Bennett Security Movement Sensor

The movement sensor came about when a handyman at a care home complained about pressure mats short life span and how easily damaged they are, also more worrying was that some residents know that if they stand on them a nurse arrives so try to step over them sometimes falling in the process.

My background is not only in nurse call but intruder alarms as well so I decided to build a small discrete sensor that covered both sides of the bed. 

The first ones were wired to a nurse call point and worked well but one of the drawbacks of the pressure mat also applied to the sensor, it could be unplugged!

ProMove Sling

ProMove Sling


Established in 2007, ProMove UK Ltd manufactures and supply’s the ProMove sling. The unique design of the ProMove sling means it can be used to move an individual in a confined or outdoor location where a hoist cannot be used.

The ProMove sling allows an individual to be moved without being manhandled and with the least risk to the operator. It has been independently tested to carry a range of different sized individuals, from children aged 3 years to large adults weighing up to 45 stone.