Yes, we are regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) who ensure the quality and safety of care in hospitals, dentists, care homes as well as care provided in people’s homes.
In September of 2019, Solo Support Services had a routine, full comprehensive, in house inspection with CQC focusing on all regulated areas, achieving an overall Good rating. A copy of the inspection report can be found here: https://www.cqc.org.uk/location/1-4382396970
The main focus of a CQC inspection is to ensure the service safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. The CQC conduct ongoing monitoring of services with the aim of ensuring regulated providers are operating safely.
Each month they review the information they have on the service to ascertain if it suggests that the quality of care in a service has improved or declined, they may follow this up between inspections or ask providers to give us further information or explain the reasons for this change. Also, they may also decide to re-inspect a service. If there are significant concerns, they may carry out a focused inspection or bring forward a comprehensive inspection.
Every month, CQC will publish a statement on their website for lower risk services. This will let providers and the public know that they have not found any evidence that tells them they need to re-assess the rating or quality of care at that service at that time.
CQC value all feedback as it helps them to understand the service, making care better for everyone. If you would like to provide feedback directly to CQC, please visit their website: https://www.cqc.org.uk/give-feedback-on-care?referer=promoblock
Yes, we can arrange a personalised recruitment campaign for you, to your requirements, from creation of advert, management of applicants and support with screening interviews. You may wish to interview candidates yourself or you may want support with in person interviews. We are led by you and your preferences.
We have active campaigns for Third Party clients, Direct Payment clients and privately funded clients who use us solely for recruitment.
See our vacancies page for examples of the individual campaigns.
Yes, every client has their own client deposit account, so that all incoming and outgoing monies relating to your care and support are easy to view for yourself and the funding body.
No, we calculate any fees over and above the costs awarded for care and support so your personal budget is not impacted.
Payroll is processed four weekly or monthly depending on a client’s preference. It is processed on the same date for all employees on a package of care.
Yes you can employ family members to provide your care and support, however different funding bodies have different rules as to whether you can employ someone who lives in the same house as you. We can support you to ask those questions and assist to recruit if needed to find a team to best meet your individual needs.
Yes, anyone who employs Personal Assistants to provide care and support within their own home must have Employers Liability Insurance. This is to protect you, your property and belongings and also your employee in the event of an incident or accident. We can provide information on different insurance providers and (where we hold a Managed Account) arrange payment for this annually.
We cannot advise on HR queries, but we can support you to contact your Employers Liability Insurance provider who will be able to support and guide you through any queries you may have, including provision of template letters and what to say in different circumstances. Using their advice ensures that you are covered by your insurance policy in the event of a claim.
We usually state a turn-around time of around 8 weeks following approval of a client’s budget by the funding body. This is to allow time to process employee DBS checks and starter paperwork, collect all relevant information from professionals involved in a client’s support and then write client specific care plans and risk assessments. This time frame can be longer if recruitment is required.
We place our clients at the centre of all decision making regarding their care and support. We recognise that you and your circle of support are the expert by experience and therefore your input into care planning, recruitment and decisions on staffing is vital to the success of the package of care.
The above are just three examples of many as to how we encourage clients to be involved and contribute to creating a fully bespoke package of care based on your individual circumstances and preferences.
Yes, but not for you. Under our CQC registration we do have the requirement to have care plans, risk assessments and other health and safety paperwork in place and we will need information from you in order to put this together. But, most importantly, we try not to encroach on your time and to do this at a pace to suit you.
This information is shared with employees via an electronica tablet to minimise paperwork in your own home and to enable us to monitor and amend paperwork in real time.
Your Client Relations Manager (CRM) will establish a contingency plan with you or your circle of support and this will be communicated to all employees. Your contingency arrangements could be other Personal Assistants, a family member providing formal (paid) or informal (unpaid) support or a traditional agency. If you want to change your contingency arrangements at any time, please contact your CRM to discuss.
All employee training is arranged by us. Online training is communicated to employees individually and they have a set time frame to complete this. Your Client Relations Manager will to arrange any in person training on a time and date convenient for you as well as employees. The trainer will contact you prior to a training session to discuss your individual needs and ensure training is tailored to you and based around any equipment you have, to ensure the maximum benefit for employee and ultimately for you.
Your individual budget will detail all the approved costs within your budget. We cannot pay out for items or expenses not specified within the budget and therefore approved by the funding body.
We can support you to ask about changes to your funding to include other expenditure, such as equipment or therapies, based on your care and support needs.
Vaccinations are currently not mandatory to work in Health and Social Care; however, we will work in conjunction with you to ensure your opinion on the matter is fully understood, your health and wellbeing is at the centre of all decision making and you are satisfied that you have a team in place to support and meet your needs.
We do encourage employees to have the COVID-19 vaccination and booster vaccines in order to protect themselves and our clients from the illness.
PPE is worn by PAs where appropriate and FFP3 masks will be fitted and provided for employees where Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGP) are in place.
We work with our clients to ensure that all HR issues are resolved quickly and to the clients wishes, within the remit of Employment law. Our CRMs receive regular training in different aspects of HR and employment law and we also have a HR Support company who offer support and advice. The important thing is to voice any concerns as soon as they occur, so we can monitor or investigate without allowing a situation to build.
We have a code of conduct as well a client specific job description so employees are aware of what is expected of them as an employee of Solo Support Services. We have a disciplinary policy and procedure in place which is communicated to our employees via the employee handbook.
All employees of a CQC regulated Health and Social care employer have to complete annual mandatory training in a number of subjects, such as but not limited to: Safeguarding, Health and Safety and Infection Control. Training is online and you are paid for your time in completing these modules.
We then also have client specific training, determined by the individual needs of the client who you support. Some examples of client specific training are Moving and Handling, Skin Integrity and PEG feeding. We like to arrange these training sessions to be group sessions including the client.
We are a Levy paying employer and can therefore offer Apprenticeship training in a variety of Health and Social Care qualifications and subjects to interested employees. Please speak to your Client Relations Manager to find out more information.
Employees have regular supervision meetings with their Client Relations Manager to give them time away from the workplace to discuss all aspects of their role including training needs, concerns and future focus areas.
We have a wellbeing team within the Solo Head Office who regularly share tips and ideas to promote positive health and mental health. We offer the opportunity to join a cash back health plan, which allows you to reclaim the cost of dental, optical and therapies to a certain level. We also have a free and confidential telephone counselling service provided via our insurers to support employees.
We offer a workplace pension scheme to all eligible employees. Information is provided to you with your first payslip and when eligible, monies are deducted from your pay before tax and paid, along with the employer contribution, directly to the pension provider who will hold an account in your name. They will provide you with information on statements, management of funds and any contact information you will need.
Yes, your pay slip will be sent to you via a secure online portal prior to the payment date. It will show detail all gross pay (for example if you have different rates of pay for different shifts) as well as any deductions for tax, National Insurance and Pensions. We also send your annual P60 report via this portal.
You can expect a professional and client focused service, providing the relevant information to the relevant parties are every stage of the set up and ongoing duing package management.
We work closely with our clients to provide a bespoke service, specific to individual circumstances and ensuring that personal preferences and outcomes are at the centre of all planning and necessary paperwork.
On receipt of a new referral enquiry, a member of our Business Development team will hold a meeting with the commissioners and the client (separately or together to suit everyone’s requirements) to fully understand the clients care and support needs. We will need a support plan as well as any other clinical information and protocols.
On receipt of this information, we create a client specific budget, including payroll hours, associated payroll on costs, training costs and any other approved expenditure, we also create a detailed Training Analysis to illustrate the training costs shown in the budget.
We do need engagement from all parties to progress a new referral, i.e. the client, their circle of support and any employees whose employment will be TUPE’d to Solo. We can hold meetings with employees to answer any questions or concerns they may have, supported by literature we can provide as a future reference point.
On approval of a budget, we then allocate a Client Relations Manager to liaise with all parties and set up the package of care.
We can provide bank statements for each individual client account along with profit and loss reports from our accountancy software program. This information can be provided as requested, or at a set frequency, depending on your requirements.