A nursing home close to the city centre which describes itself as ‘luxury’ and a ‘quiet retreat’ has been found to be ‘Inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) watchdog.

Chester Lodge care home, run by Heathbrook Ltd in Brook Street, is a privately owned service providing residential and nursing care for up to 40 people according to the CQC.

It is said to be inadequate overall including safety, its effectiveness, the care provided and leadership. It also should improve its responsiveness.

The home’s website says it has been providing professional nursing and residential care since 1991 and has an ‘unsurpassable’ homely feel.

The CQC says their findings followed unannounced visits.

At the last inspection in December 2016 it asked the provider to take action to make improvements on a number of aspects including safe care and treatment.

“These actions had not been completed,” says a report.

Inspectors comment: “During our visit we found a number of new and repeated breaches of the Health and Social Care Act.”

Residents spoken with said that they felt safe at the home and relatives felt that staff ‘did their utmost’ to support people and protect them from harm.

“However we found that the risks to people’s health and safety were not always identified, assessed or managed,” says the CQC.

There was a safeguarding concern prior to the inspection in relation to the management and assessment of pressure ulcers and a number of residents were at risk of malnutrition or dehydration.

Referrals to health professionals were made when concerns regarding people’s health were identified but this was not always done promptly.

Advice and guidance provided by health professionals was not always implemented to ensure that risks to people’s health and wellbeing were minimised.

Residents did not always receive their medication as prescribed.

Accidents and incidents were not effectively monitored and management plans to reduce the occurrence of accidents were not always followed.

The premises were not clean and inspectors ‘detected unpleasant smells’ in parts of the building.

Staff practice showed that people’s consent was considered before care or support was provided although they did not always respect people’s opinions and choices in regards to how they wanted their support to be provided.

Residents were not always kept comfortable and were not always treated with dignity and respect.

They said, however, the staff were caring and did the best that they could to look after them.

Care plans did not always record people’s needs accurately.

The CQC pointed out the service had not complied with the regulations since October 2015 and improvements had not been made or sustained.

It concluded the overall rating for Chester Lodge was ‘Inadequate’ and placed the home in special measures.

A spokesperson for the home said: “At Chester Lodge Care Home, we always strive to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of our residents and are fully committed to maintaining a high standard of care at all times. We are unable to comment any further at present as this matter is subject to ongoing proceedings with the CQC.”

The watchdog says Chester Lodge will continue to be kept under review and, if needed, this could be escalated to urgent enforcement action.

The CQC has powers to cancel the registration.