Greensleeves Care has always believed passionately about openness and transparency with our existing and potential residents and their families. The following information provides insight into Sharnbrook House and Greensleeves Care the charity that manages the home.
Funding Arrangements for Greensleeves Care’s Residents
Greensleeves Care is a registered charity and a proud and ethical not-for-profit organisation existing solely to improve the lives of older people within our homes and the wider community.
This vision drives everything we do including how we balance the numbers of residents we support that are Local Authority funded and those that are private fee payers.
As you would expect charities need to provide a public and altruistic contribution to society in order to achieve and maintain their charitable status. We therefore pledge 25% of all the older people we help and support across the Trust will be those in receipt of public funding.
In many cases the people whose care is paid for out of the public purse are residents that have capital depleted whilst living in a Greensleeves care home. Capital Depleted is the phrase the government uses to describe somebody that has run out of money whilst paying for care.
Many families receive great comfort knowing that Greensleeves Care will do all it can to retain their loved ones in our care homes even when funding becomes an issue. In 20 years of exceptional care provision Greensleeves has never asked a resident to leave as a result of them no-longer being able to pay for their care.
This is an undertaking and a commitment that very few other organisations will agree to and publicly announce.
Key features of the service
At Sharnbrook House we provide a range of different care options to our Residents, these can be broken down into specialist Dementia Care and Residential Care. Sharnbrook House does not provide Nursing Care.
Many potential residents and their family, friends and advocates often struggle to understand what the difference between Residential Care and Nursing Care is. These two links provide informative articles that explain what these differences are. If after reading these articles you still have questions or simply want to know if Sharnbrook House is the best possible home for you or your loved one then give us a call and we will be happy to discuss with you.
In our experience the best thing to do is come and meet us if you are unsure and we can help you better understand which would be best for you and your loved one.
Overview of Sharnbrook House
Sharnbrook House is a 30 bedded home with a range of different styles and types of room suitable to meet the needs and tastes of most potential residents. The majority of the time our home is nearly full and when we do have availability it is often for a short period of time because the home is very popular and has a very good local reputation. For that reason it is hard to give specific details about any individual rooms available, the best way to find out more information is to pop in and see the available rooms for yourself.
The home is split over 3 main floors all serviced by a lift in the centre of the home, there is a nice dining room, a main lounge, Garden room and a hairdresser.
Staffing Arrangements at Sharnbrook House
It is important to know what staff will be looking after you or one of your loved ones. Different care companies employ differing levels of staff. Greensleeves Care believe it is essential that you have a transparent understanding of what our staffing levels are in our homes.
The standard daily staffing arrangement at Sharnbrook House is:
Home Manager – Responsible for the safe and effective running of the home. All of our home managers are required to be registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Becoming a registered manager is a difficult and challenging process where the individual has to prove to the CQC that they have the right qualifications, knowledge and skills to look after a care home, its residents and all of the staff. The registration process takes several months from start to finish.
Deputy Manager – The number 2 and the right hand person of the home manager, their job is to support the home manager to provide exceptional care to our residents and help manage the staff team. The Deputy will spend much of their time supervising and training the care team as well as conducting audits and generally ensuring standards are high.
Maintenance Person – Works 40 hours per week, but is on call 24 hours a day 7 days a week if needed in an emergency. Provides Health & Safety support, odd jobs for the residents and their families and facilities management support
1x Cook – Provides home cooked meals 3 times a day to each and every one of our residents, discussing their dietary requirements and likes/dislikes.
1X Kitchen Assistant – Supports the cook in preparing all meals from scratch and ensuring the residents enjoy this highlight of their day
2X Domestics – Every day ensuring the resident’s rooms are clean and tidy and that the communal spaces are ready for the residents to enjoy.
1X Laundry Assistant Ensures the resident’s clothes and other laundry is washed, ironed and returned in good time to a high standard.
1X Day Senior Carers – 1 on all day every day, these experienced and caring individuals “run the shift” and make sure the residents are safe, well cared for and happy.
4 Day Care assistants – During the day providing care, support and anything else our resident’s needs.
1 Activities Coordinator – Providing vary arrange of activities during the day
1 Senior Night Care Assistant – Manages the shift overnight.
2 Night Care Assistants – At night we still have an excellent staffing ratio to make sure that any needs our residents have are fully delivered whatever the time of day.
Latest Inspection Ratings and Grades
Sharnbrook House’s latest CQC inspection was published on 8th March 2019 and received an overall “Good” rating. See a copy of the latest Sharnbrook Hosue CQC report.
Carehome.co.uk is the most important and relevant care home ratings company in the country, Sharnbrook House achieved a score of 9.8 out of 10 based upon reviews of residents and their families. Take a look at Sharnbrook House reviews on carehome.co.uk to see what people are writing about us.
Fees and Charges
Paying for care and the Financial Assessment
Another one of our charitable obligations is to ensure the longevity of the Trust and make sure that our current residents and those we serve in the future are safe and well. Part of this is ensuring that we take appropriate steps to ensure the financial security of the Trust is maintained.
Therefore, we request that those residents that will be paying for their own care complete a simple and non-intrusive financial assessment form. This is a simple and easy to complete step that provides an assurance that they are able to cover the cost of their care for at least 3 years.
Interestingly this is something that many of our families expect from us and in some cases demand. Not only does this policy provide security to the Charity it also gives many of our families confidence that they will not be the only people paying for care in the home their loved one chooses to live in.
People often worry that other families would move in with only a month or 2 of available fees and then stop paying. Although this sort of practice is very rare and almost unheard of, knowing we take steps to safeguard against it still provides significant peace of mind.
Although assurances of 3 year’s-worth of available funds is the standard amount we request there are, of course, variances on this policy. For example, if a resident was joining us for palliative care and was only expected to stay with us for a much shorter period then it would not be appropriate to insist on 3 years of funding and nor would it be in the resident’s best interests.
There are other examples of when further discretion may be appropriate, in the first instance the Home Manager is the best person to discuss this with. She may then seek further guidance from more senior managers within the Trust.
What happens if my money runs out?
As already stated we do not ask anybody to leave a Greensleeves Home if they run out of money whilst living with us. If a resident uses their money and “capital depletes” down to the threshold level then Social Services will provide support. Supporting families that have capital depleted is not something that happens every day, but it is a procedure that all Local Authorities are well versed in and will support you through.
The first step in the process is for the family to contact the Home Manager and let them know that they are approaching the threshold level, the Home Manager will then advise them to contact their Social Worker and inform them of the same. The Local Authority will then ask for permission to check the finances and providing they do not find anything illegal or illegitimate in how the individual’s money has been spent they will then provide LA funding for that resident.
If the Local Authority do find anything unlawful about how a resident’s money has depleted they will in most cases attempt to recover the disputed money and refuse to pay for the on-going care. This is obviously a very complicated subject and very difficult to condense down to a few paragraphs, so if you have any questions or want to know more information you should ask your social worker or financial advisor and they should be able to help you.
Providing the Local Authority is happy to pay for the residents care and that the family were open and honest with us when completing the financial assessment when they moved into Sharnbrook House we will happily allow them to stay living with us in their home. If the Local Authority do raise concerns and refuse to pay an individual’s care fees because they have uncovered unlawful spending practices or if Greensleeves Care was misled by the resident or their representatives we will have to seek advice about what to do next. This is a very unusual set of circumstances and does not happen very often.
Guaranteeing to keep a resident when they run out of money is something that very few care providers are prepared to commit to. In many cases they will not even properly discuss the subject because they do not want you to lose you as a potential customer.
We do not need a Guarantor
We do not believe in asking for a guarantor, we never have never done so. Many other care providers have used this as standard practice and then stopped doing so when the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) started looking at these practices.
Greensleeves Care has always been honest and transparent and always felt that asking a family member to guarantee care fees out of their own personal income was not how we wanted to operate.
What care fees include
The CMA have recently instructed care home operators to be very explicit about what is included in a residents fees to help them fully understand the financial situation. Again we have always been open and honest about such things but we have replicated below even more detail than was previously the case to fully comply with the CMA’s request.
The following items and services are included in and covered by your weekly fees:
All costs associated with your personal care including:
- Assistance to get up in the morning
- Assistance with washing and dressing
- Support to get to and use the toilet
- Assistance to go to bed in the evening
- Overnight Checks if you wish to have them
- Support to get to the dining room, activities, lounges, gardens etc. or back to your room
- Assistance with eating and drinking if you require or want it
- Administration of medication
Accommodation costs including:
- The cost of your bedroom
- A communal charge for all shared space
- All Council Tax charges
- Any other costs that may be normally covered under accommodation
Electricity and Gas:
- For heating and lighting your bedroom
- Heating and lighting the communal spaces you share with other residents
- Hot water for washing, laundry and kitchen services
- Power for carers and staff to run the home
- Power for cooking and preparing food
Food and drink, including snacks
- Snacks when you want them
- A wide range of hot and cold beverages
- Cleaning of your personal room each day
- Making your bed each day
- Cleaning the communal spaces
- Cleaning the work and clinical spaces
- All your personal clothes, (except dry cleaning items)
- Your bedding at least once per week, or more often if you need/request
- Towels and face clothes
- Table clothes and table linen
Television and Internet
- Licence for personal use
- Any communal licences
- Installation of personal TV cable
- Personal Internet connection
- Personal Phone connection
- WiFi in all available areas with specific resident connection
What is not covered by weekly fees
It is just important when making a decision to know what you are not paying as what you are paying for. The following are not covered in a standard weekly fee:
- Professional hairdressing
- Aromatherapy massage and reflexology
- Personal copies of newspapers or magazines
- Personal purchases from shops or stores such as personal gifts, stationery, confectionery, soaps and toiletries
- Clothing, shoes and slippers
- Dry cleaning
- Other privately arranged healthcare
Although the home management team will do their best to arrange NHS delivered services which would of course be free at the point of delivery.
Cost of Care
It is hard to give a detailed cost of care on a website because there are so many variables and factors; such as size of room, location of room, specific facilities in the room and a range of other elements. The type of care will also have an impact; the more support somebody need the higher the charge and the more independent they are the lower the charge.
To give you a good idea of our charges we have included the average weekly fee for Sharnbrook House, which is £901 per week. Remember this is an average with some people paying a bit more and others paying less. To get a much more detailed and accurate indication of what you may be paying our Home Manager can meet with you and explain exactly what you might be paying. Ultimately the actual charge that each of our residents will be asked to pay will be set at the Care Needs Assessment.
Increases in the cost of care
As stated within the contract care fees are only subject to an increase once per annum. This increase is implemented on 1st April to take effect for the following financial year.
The only exception to this is when a residents needs change significantly and an increase in the specific care that they receive requires an additional increase in between the standard annual increases.
The annual increase is generally impacted by a number of elements which neither the home nor Greensleeves Care have any influence. These include Government initiatives, impacts from forces such as Brexit and general industry changes or new legislation. See below a number of such elements that have impacted our annual fee over previous years:
- National Minimum Wage
- Compulsory Pension Contribution Costs
- Increase in Registration Fees with Care Quality Commission
One of the main motivations for the CMA to complete a review of the Care Home Industry was “excessive and unjustifiable up front and non-refundable charges” which many care providers charged. Greensleeves Care never has and never would charge these joining fees, because we do not think that they are in the spirit of providing good care and protecting vulnerable older people.
So rest assured we do not charge an up-front non-refundable joining fee! We do, however, ask for a deposit and a set period of fees in advance.
Deposit – The deposit is to protect the Care Home, the Trust and therefore its residents from financial harm caused by a small number of potential sources:
- Damage to room prior to departure
- Non-payment of fees
Upon departure from the home the deposit is automatically returned in full unless part of it is required to be offset against any of the above causes. The deposit level is calculated as the equivalent of 4 weeks care fees. For example if the agreed weekly fee is £919 the fully-refundable deposit would be 4 x £901 = £3,604.
Families and potential residents should feel reassured that retaining all or part of a deposit is not a standard practice and in the vast majority of situations this is simply not done. In most cases we will re-decorate, repair and replace various items in a room prior to a new resident moving in at our own expense. The cost of this improvement is not routinely charged to either the incoming or the out-going resident.
Fees in advance – As with all care homes Greensleeves Care requests that residents pay their monthly fees in advance. Once the resident is settled into the home they will continue to be invoiced 1 months care fees in advance. The initial advance payment is equal to 6 weeks of care fees. This period is chosen because every Greensleeves contract has a 6 week trial period built in which allows families and residents to move in to one of our homes risk free. They can try the care, ensure that it is indeed the right long-term care option for them. If at any point during the 6 weeks they decide it is not for them they will be refunded the deposit and any unused care week’s fees.
For example if the agreed weekly fee is £993 the 6 week payment in advance would be:
6 x £901 = £5,406
If a resident moved out of the home, for what-ever reason after 3 weeks they would receive a refund of:
3x £901 = £2,703
Greensleeves Care have always believed in allowing our residents a trial period so they can really understand if this is the right option for them or not. Deciding to move into residential care is a big decision and we believe that it is our responsibility to make that whole process as easy and challenge free as possible.
We therefore introduced a 6 week trial period into all of our contracts. It allows our new residents and their families to move into one of our care homes risk free. Residents feel content in the knowledge that if they decide a Greensleeves Home is not for them they can leave without a long notice period and receive all of their deposit and unused advanced care fees automatically without argument or lengthy appeal process. One of the advantages of being a charity is that it is all about the resident it is never about the money.
This trial period is also an opportunity to ensure that your selected home is the best possible place for your loved one. If during your stay it became apparent that it was not the right place for you we would assist you to find a more suitable home.