Pharos Care limited was formed between three shareholding partners. The first home opened in 2006 /2007. Listed below are all the homes, when they opened with a brief description of each of those services:
Katherine House was developed out of two large semi-detached Victorian properties that were purchased and converted into one nine-bed registered care home. The home filled more rapidly than would have been ideal for a new venture (in a little over four months) as we diligently responded to urgent requests to take people with complex needs with a primary underlying diagnosis of a learning disability with ‘additional needs’ that included Autism or other behaviours that can challenge. These individuals came predominantly from significantly more secure settings and the motivation for our intervention was to prevent people going on to section, even though the initial concept in terms of staffing quotas etc was always envisaged as that of a more generic 1:1 service with some additional support hours to provide support in the community.
The home initially ran well on this basis, but inevitably as the number of, by now, more complex residents became suitably accustomed to their environment some of the previously displayed behaviours began to manifest themselves and this inevitably impacted on other service user and ultimately on the staff team. The incumbent manager struggled with this and unfortunately could not cope with what had by now become a very ‘un-generic’ service and she decided that her capabilities were not compatible with the challenges she now faced and she decided to move on to more suitable employment elsewhere. We replaced the manager with Sheila (the current manager) as a result of the previous arrangement she had a number of disciplinary issues she had to deal with.
However, that said, with all the unforeseen complexities of the nature of the now revised provision, we have still been able to provide a service where a significant number of people have transitioned successfully into less complex services. When credible vacancies have occurred, we have generally been able to successfully backfill these within a three month time period and to that end, Katherine House is currently 100% occupied and well managed. Management accounts and credible inspection reports testify to the success of this initial and earliest venture for Pharos Care Ltd.
Highfield House was successfully opened in 2008 as a seven bed residential care home; like Katherine house, it too filled quickly and within a three month time period was operating at full capacity. In 2009 and in line with the local authorities commissioning intentions, we started phased transition of a number of residents into supported living with other providers, as Pharos Support Service was not an option available to us at this time. The overriding issue at this time was that Walsall had changed their policy around long term residential care and we, like so many other established providers, have struggled to provide a fully occupied service since this time. However to overcome this at a business level, as much as we would like not to, we do continue to support people from other authorities at Highfield house and we are currently looking at an out of borough referral for one of the currently vacant two beds.
Sutton House opened in 2010 as a five bed transition service for people with complex issues. Having learnt our lessons on its predecessors, we intentionally took longer time to fill this provision and decided from the outset to look predominantly at people stepping down from more secure services and the compatibility of more complex service users, something we had not been afforded on either Katherine or Sutton House. The home is generally run on a 1:1 staff ratio. Do to the nature of its commissioning, this home has provided services to people from different authorities from the outset and here again, we have successfully transitioned people onto different services such as our own Pharos care Ltd and this was in no small part the motivation for us to finally establish that ‘step down service’ with all the obvious benefits, such as being able to back fill in a more structured and time managed manner and maintain the income stream to the benefit of both companies.
The lodge was opened in 2011 as an 8 bed ‘transition specific’ registered service that’s ‘primary intention’ was to move people into more independent services in as short a time as was suitable to each individual. Like its predecessors, it too was full within a four short months and has consistently performed for the company over its life time. To date, we have successfully moved on a number of individuals in the last year to less dependent services.
Pharos Support Limited started to trade in September 2013, again due to pressure from local authorities to provide ongoing support for people being transitioned from our residential services. We began with two placements in Sandwell (From the Lodge) and two in Birmingham (From Sutton House) and to accommodate the groundswell of commissioning intent whilst still maintaining what we believe is the ‘teaspoon in cups’ analogy of pure transition, we then opened:
Consisting of five individual flats. To date, we have successfully moved the 2 people from Sandwell (Lodge) into this service and we are currently at panel for the last bed here and expect this service to be filled by the end of March 2015. We have one vacancy in Birmingham as the young lady is quite complex and we have not found anyone compatible.
Middleway care was initially started by David McDougall (a shareholder and director in the now fully merged group) in conjunction with Mr Gurnam Singh, who made available the property and funding for David to develop 266 Warwick Road with my, not inconsiderable, input as the operational care consultant. I was successful in securing a 5 year block contract for the companies first home ‘Patricia House’. In 2013 it was merged as part of the first stage of the soon to be amalgamated group. Patricia House and subsequently, Victoria Road became long term held tenancies and exist as such today.
Opened in 2007 as 5 bed transition service that over the years has successfully transitioned a number of people into supported living. To this companies’ credit, they were amongst the first to fully transition a resident through the various step down provisions from 1:1 hours to zero hours. However due to the nature of several of the residents and the intervention of their family members, the focus has been somewhat compromised over the past few years and we are currently working with Solihull to again develop the service as a transition focused provision and to that end we are going through a ‘process of reassessment’ for all the individuals living there to motivate and support them into more independent services through consultation and ongoing dialogue with all the parties concerned.
Was initially going to be a 5/6 bed transitional service, but like so many of our developments, after discussions with commissioning at Solihull it was decided to except their advise and change it into a supported living model of care run as a registered care home in order to maintain the sanctuary of protocol and procedure. To that end it was converted into four very individual abodes.
We identified 4 individuals in secure settings that needed support in this environment and we opened the service with all beds occupied although it took around 6 months to fill due to the long transition times of some the individuals. We transitioned one young man on to a service and agreed an accommodation cost whilst we transitioned the next person in a three month period. This service has been a testament to the collaboration between local commissioners, professionals and care providers; we have saved the local authority in the region of £200,000pa in fees from previous placements. This is the model of care that we aspire to in that it affords the residents to truly have the privacy their own front doors within the safety of a residential framework of care.
Midway was co-founded by David McDougall and I, to accommodate the growing demand from Solihull commissioning to provide suitable and viable transition specific services in that borough at the same time as Pharos care and Middleway were operating separately but successfully under their various registrations and shareholders. As the main drivers of the existing entities, both Pharos and Middleway, the obvious synergy between David and I, afforded us the opportunity to collaborate on those demands from the local authority in the form of:
Which was opened in 2008 as such a service, however due to the fact that Solihull was closing down another service, before any conversion of that property to a care home could be begun, they asked us to change the provision to support 5 individuals from this home for which we received a block contract for an initial 5 years for all 6 beds, similar to that held my Middleway care at Patricia house. In fact that home was the template for that contract.
Although this contract has now been changed, by mutual agreement under the recent contracts review, to individual contracts I have completed CFC for each individual with Solihull with some prices having gone up and some have down. We have also successfully transitioned one of this home’s residents into supported living in 2014 and we back filled around 5 months later.
Opened in 2010 as a 7 bed residential care home, this modern, open plan service again filled within 4 months, it is currently full and we have two residents in the process of moving into supported living which we anticipate will be concluded by the end of March. This home supports individuals with complex needs, mobility and other health issues.
Midway Care Warwickshire was initially to be a joint venture with the owner of (owner wished to exit, bought him out) Glebe house, this did not work so we bought the property off him and it is currently run under the registration of midway care limited.
A six bed residential care home from which we have transitioned a number of individual into supported living over the last few years, we currently have one vacancy which we have not tried to back fill as we feel there are ongoing issues that need dealing with first.
Formed as a joint venture with CMS developments in 2013, work completed July 2014 and the service has filled very quickly since then. Service is a registered care home and supported living on the same site and has been designed as transitioning specific for ‘younger adults’ with learning disabilities and complex needs.
Midway Support Services was yet another company started at the request of Solihull as they wanted to continue to work with some of the peoples we supported, who were moving through the services. These services have grown generically and effectively on demand and we now support people from Worcestershire and Warwickshire as well as those from Solihull and surrounds.
This service has always been seen as the potential flagship of the group to date and has come with its own ‘history in a bag’ having been started as far back as 2011 as a joint venture between Midway care Ltd and Havercroft Ltd, this imposing site will finally be completed in the next six weeks and will be open for business on the first of March. The project has had significant collaboration between Staffordshire social services and Midway care. The provision opens with 16 out of the 20 beds reserved and the planned approach over the initial quarter is for those 16 people to move in. We also have two reserves on the flat, however these will not be worked on until the 16 people have transitioned and we can support further.
Staff - We have successfully recruited 20 staff initially, who are currently going through the induction process through our head office.