Learning Disability Today
Supporting professionals working in learning disability and autism services

CQC closes Herne Bay care home

The owner of a care home for people with learning disabilities and older people in Kent has withdrawn his appeal over the decision by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to cancel the home’s registration, after whistleblowers revealed safeguarding concerns.

Sea View Lodge in Herne Bay was closed in June by the CQC after it made an urgent application to Canterbury Magistrates’ Court to cancel the registration of the home with immediate effect.

The home’s owner, Shahid Sheikh, appealed the decision but withdrew it on July 27. According to a report on the BBC website, this was because the legal fees were becoming too expensive. Mr Sheikh is said to deny the allegations.

The eight residents at Sea View Lodge have been found alternative accommodation. Following concerns raised by staff whistleblowers, the CQC gathered evidence that it says demonstrated people experienced poor standards of care that amounted to neglect, that there was a failure to manage long-term health conditions, low staff numbers and people were cared for by staff who did not have the training, knowledge and skills to meet the people’s care needs.

The CQC has referred safeguarding allegations to the police. Roxy Boyce, regional director for CQC in the southeast, said: “We acted quickly to protect the safety and welfare of people at Sea View Lodge as soon as staff came forward with their concerns. “All services must meet essential standards of care and we will take action where services are failing people. “Closing a care home is never a decision taken lightly. These are places where people live and which they consider as their homes. But the only way to properly protect residents at Sea View Lodge was to close the home immediately, and move residents to other locations where care is of a better standard.”

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