Care UK Residential Care Service has won the Best Practice Award judged and presented by the National Association of Safety and Health in Care Services (NASHiC).
The award, which is only announced biennially, recognises the commitment, work and investment that has gone into further boosting fire safety in Care UK’s 120 homes across England and Scotland.
Care UK’s Head of Health & Safety Richard Price said: “We have almost 7,000 residents, many of whom would be unable to evacuate by themselves in an emergency.
“We also have a Chief Executive who is passionately committed to health and safety and who wanted to raise profile and understanding within the wider business. As a result, we had everything we needed to take us to the highest possible level of compliance.”
As well as appointing a new fire risk assessor to achieve high level reviews in all homes, Richard and his team spent a great deal of time devising and implementing training for colleagues in home fire drills. The team also met regularly with Essex County Fire & Rescue to share ideas on the innovations.
Richard said: “We do everything possible to ensure residents and colleagues are given exceptional protection, including creating an enhanced five-tier approach to risk rating that better enables our property services team to prioritise actions and manage risk.
All the new homes that we build have sprinklers as standard and all homes’ addressable panels have been upgraded. A new approved contractor list for fire remedial work was created, to maintain a consistent quality of workmanship.
“We also devised an online action management tool, administered by home managers, allowing for easier management of fire risk assessment actions, and this can be viewed at any time by regional directors, who can alert the appropriate teams of overdue actions.
“I am very proud of the hard work the wider team within the organisation have put into improving fire safety compliance and I am also very proud that the senior team at Care UK understood and was prepared to take on the investment and enormous commitment, recognising the importance of leading from the front.
“The NASHiC Awards are the highest accolade in our sector’s profession and I was very proud to represent my team and Care UK to receive its congratulations for our commitment to resident and colleagues safety.”