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Care Home Manager Blog – Good care never makes the news.

Grainne Wokes a care home manager in Buckinghamshire tells us how she keeps going despite the negative representation of care homes in the media.

The life of a care home manager can be a lonely one. Whether it’s answering the questions of internal or external regulators, answering emails, conducting audits, developing action plans, we are also held accountable for the actions of our staff – after all we are responsible for their well-being. We don’t have anyone else to turn too.

Everyone needs five minutes of my time. No one seems concerned about my work life balance, breaks during the day or our work load. Add to that the on call element of the role meaning calls in the middle of the night and my family often disturbed.

I am a registered nurse, with an honours degree and a range of other formal qualifications. Nurses are often held to a higher account than anyone else in a care home but other disciplines see us as lacking knowledge and care homes are seen as a “Cinderella service.”

But, this is the important bit, I do it every single day. I turn up, regardless of how I feel. I work long hours, I give everyone the five minutes that they need.

Care Home Managers ensure care homes continue to provide safety to vulnerable members of our society, we offer them our time, care and respect. Our residents, they are the reason we are in the job!

Care homes don’t get represented well in the press. I once heard a comment on a radio station that good care should not make the news. But for those working in care, those amazing staff who dedicate their lives to supporting others, how do you think this makes us feel? We want to be able to spread the news for our work by sharing the good practice we encourage others.

Thank you Grainne, care home manager – Hillside Nursing Home, Buckinghamshire for sharing your thoughts.

  • Anton Le Grandier

    excellent article and one the sentiments of which I heartily endorse.I have worked as a Nurse for 30 yrs,both NHS and Private sector,and for the last 13 yrs in the care home sector.The public image of care homes has long been a concern of mine as it is unrelentingly negative.I’m not sure how this situation arose but it certainly isnt helped by fellow Nurses general disregard for care home staff.Many NHS staff,some with a fraction of the experience of care home staff,tend to see Care Homes as little more than a pre-retirement sinecure or a dumping ground for staff who couldnt hack it in the NHS.Unfortunately for many years NHS elderly care was seen,as you say,as a “cinderella” service and hardly worth anyones attention.I think this followed on from Medical professionals disregard for Gerontology,the situation is better nowdays,as not being on a par with Cardiology,Neurology and whatever other “ology” garnered the big bucks and awards.
    Its also a great pity there’s little recognition of the role of Home Managers often,unfortunately,from their own staff.Whatever your situation managers like yourself are absolutely invaluable and not just paper shufflers who sit in an office all day ;-).Im sure your residents and their relatives appreciate your efforts and,hopefully,your staff too although maybe thats a forlorn hope!Certainly Im hopeful all this will be recognised more publicly and Care Staff,Nurses and Managers,get the respect their efforts deserve.

  • Karen Jenkinson

    Well said and thoroughly agree as a fellow Care Home
    Manager and Registered Nurse.

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