A CONTROVERSIAL care home has been given a new lease of life by its new owners who hope to transform elderly care in Worksop and the wider area.
Jubilee Court Nursing Home is the new name for Rufford Care Centre, on Gateford Road.
Phil and Joy Gray, and their team of experienced care staff and managers, took over the 100 bed facility back in December and are working hard to turn its fortunes around.
In the past the home had gained a bad reputation after serious concerns were raised by healthcare watchdog the Care Quality Commission about the way it was being run.
This resulted in several staff being suspended and an embargo being placed preventing any new admissions to the home.
But Phil and Joy, a Worksop couple who also own Westvilla Nursing Home in Retford, are determined to remove that image.
“We want to shake up elderly care,” said Joy, 29.
“We are not a massive company or organisation, there’s just the two of us, a small management team made up of some of our friends and family, and our staff.”
“We have seen elderly care done wrong and that makes you want to see it done right, and we have an opportunity to do that here.”
“If it’s not good enough for our grandparents it’s not good enough for anybody.”
Phil worked as a care assistant from the age of 17 and has also trained people in how to provide care.
“It has become a passion for us and we are determined to set a high standard here at Jubilee Court,” said Phil, 32.
Said Joy: “If we can raise the bar so high here that people want to come and stay with us, then hopefully it will have a knock-on impact on all the other care homes and they will want to improve alongside us.”
Jubilee Court is currently in the midst of a complete revamp, with every room being steam cleaned, sterilised and redecorated before residents can occupy them again.
A small community of 23 residents are already being cared for in one section of the home, while the rest is brought up to standard.
Even the menu has been redesigned.
Said Joy: “From homemade soups to prawn cocktail and fresh fruit pavlova, our residents are enjoying a really delicious menu now. We’ve even introduced real butter, rather than the tasteless margarine they were having.”
“They are eating the things they want. Food is a big part of the day for them so if they ask for something we will try and get it for them.”
Phil added: “Anything we can do to add value and quality to these people’s lives we will do it, even if it comes at a cost - it’s a necessary cost and a must.”
“And that applies to our staff. It’s essential that we have highly trained staff who are proud of their jobs.”
“The team we have got here is fantastic and we’re so thankful they are working with us. They have had a hard time but all that will change.”
Phil and Joy will now face inspections and audits by the CQC, social services and the primary care trust.
But they relish the chance to show off the improvements they have made, and work with the authorities to learn what they can do better.
“We have come in with fresh eyes and keeping fresh eyes is difficult. So these checks are necessary and we welcome them,” said Phil.
And what about the new name? The couple said it was simply a chance for a fresh start.
Said Phil: “We didn’t think the old name was very homely. Jubilee was appropriate because of the Queen’s jubilee and also because we’re directly opposite an estate full of royal street names.”
“It’s a subtle rebranding. We don’t do big signs, adverts or websites. We would rather people just came and saw for themselves what we are all about.”