Fonthill House Nursing and Residential Care Home, already rated outstanding by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in June 2016, has once again achieved the highest possible inspection rating following a planned follow-up visit by CQC.
Incredibly, it even managed to improve on its earlier outstanding result. Previously rated 'good' in the effective and caring categories, this time the commissioners raised the ratings to outstanding, meaning that Fonthill is now outstanding in four out of the five individual categories rated by CQC.
This exceptionally rare achievement sees Fonthill add to its list of endorsements. The St Albans care home was previously awarded Beacon status by the Gold Standards Framework, acknowledging the demonstrated innovation and high quality of its end of life care and support.
Care Quality Commissioners visited Fonthill House in June 2019 to speak to residents, relatives and members of staff. The visit was conducted by one CQC inspector and one expert by experience; that is, someone who has personal experience of using or caring for a person who uses this type of care service.
Both commissioners also looked at thank you letters from the families of former residents. They said that, without exception, these letters “told a story of outstanding kindness and care that remained with and left a positive feeling for the families going forward.”
Current Fonthill residents and their relatives were also full of praise. One resident said: “The staff are looking after us as real people, we can feel that we matter to them,” while a family member said: “Your care home is astonishing. Your staff are beyond belief. So caring, so loving, so kind.”
The inspection rated Fonthill as outstanding in four areas – effective, caring, responsive and well led – and as good in the category of safety. Fonthill House was also highly praised for the emphasis it places on always looking for ways to improve, with weekly meetings to ensure it is consistently meeting residents' needs.
Nathan Tomkinson, owner of Fonthill House, says: “We are delighted to be once again rated outstanding by CQC. Out of 15,458 care homes in England, only 3.7 per cent are rated outstanding and only 1.48 per cent in Hertfordshire, a real testament to the passion and dedication of the staff at Fonthill House”