Doctor-led homecare firm on mission to boost Fylde and Wyre’s Coast care
Seeing a lack of quality homecare in the region has inspired one provider to expand into the Fylde Coast, giving those needing support at home the dignity they deserve.
Westmorland Homecare, which was founded in the Lake District in 2017 by Dr Josh Macaulay and Dr Chris Moss with co-director Russell Crossley, is now offering its services in Blackpool, Poulton-le-Fylde, Fylde and Wyre to help residents live active and independent lives in their own homes.
The trio were inspired to set up the company’s second base in Poulton-le-Fylde by their experiences both working for the NHS but also seeing their own loved ones cared for at home.
“We believe in treating people with dignity and respect and we want to really raise the expectations on what real quality care should be – we’ve all had family members who have needed care and we could see clearly where things went wrong,” explains Russell, who grew up in the area.
“That is exactly why we set up Westmorland Homecare: to allow people to access the right support in their own homes for as long as they wish.
“We could see that the care options in the region were lacking, so wanted to be able to offer our clients a quality alternative.”
He gives the example of a client in his mid-30s who broke down in tears when he learned that Westmorland Homecare would send the same staff to him at the scheduled time each day: his previous carers had sometimes arrived up to five hours late, then returned at 6pm to put him to bed, leaving him with his dignity in tatters.
As well as home help and personal care, Westmorland Homecare provide a companionship service both at home and out and about, and professional support for people living with dementia.
“The majority of people believe their only avenue for help is to get the social services to send carers. They often don’t believe that they have the power to choose their homecare service. Even if they are fully funded or self-funded individuals – Even fully funded individuals can still choose their own care company. It may mean that they have to pay a small ‘top-up’ fee to the provider, but at least it’s a company they know and trust”
The service was rated outstanding in every area by the Care Quality Commission on its first inspection in 2018, making it the only homecare provider in history to gain the highest rating on its first assessment; out of some 16,500 homecare services registered in the UK, only 14 have been rated outstanding in all areas.
The company, which plans to further expand to Lytham and Garstang, has also been shortlisted for the Better Business Award in the British Business Awards 2019.
And Westmorland Homecare’s ethical approach extends to their own staff, who are paid between £12 and £15.70 per hour – the company is set to create jobs for 100 care staff in its first year, along with ten office staff at its new Marketplace base in Poulton-le-Fylde.
“We have some great staff who are genuinely happy in their jobs,” adds Russell. “And because they’re happy, that is passed on to our clients who are able to build proper friendships with their carers because they see the same faces every day.”