Choosing Care for your Loved One – The Mum Test
The ‘Mum Test’ was a concept presented by Andrea Sutcliffe, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care at the Care Quality Commission (CQC). When the CQC published ‘A fresh start for the regulation and inspection of adult social care in October 2013’ she wrote in her introduction:
“To make sure our regulatory approach is truly personalised I want us to consider for every service we look at — is this good enough for my Mum (or any other member of my family)? If it is, that is fantastic. If it’s not, then we need to do something about it.”
This approach to the assessment of care is not only welcomed by us as a very personal yard stick, but it has become something of an internal measure for our own recruitment of new staff too.
Finding the right homecare
Considering whether the service is good enough for Mum is, without doubt, the primary question prospective customers and their families will ask when seeking support for their loved ones. So why should the care industry not judge itself by those same standards?
Taking the decision to seek care, either for yourself, your partner or a parent is one of the hardest decisions many will have to make. The thought of finding care for a loved one can combine feelings of inevitability, guilt, frustration, and sometimes sadness. It can also be one of a few difficult decisions that have to be taken as you work through the process of deciding exactly what type of care is needed. Once the practicalities are resolved, the softer side of finding the right people to deliver the care is the next major milestone. This is when the Mum Test really applies.
What to consider when choosing care
You may be considering several homecare providers, all of which might be CQC Good or Outstanding, and most if not all will be able to show you the policies and processes which are in place to ensure a good delivery of their service. But have you met some of the care team? Are the care workers kind, thoughtful, patient and willing to listen? Are you happy and comfortable with the team who will be looking after your loved one? Are they good enough for Mum? These are all important questions to ask yourself so do take the time to make sure you are comfortable at every step along the way.
A word about our care team
When it comes to ensuring that we think about The Mum Test ourselves we always bear in mind Andrea’s words. As well as taking first impressions into account, along with the stringent checks we run on prospective employees, the main question we ask ourselves following any interview with a prospective new team member is ‘Would I be happy letting this person look after my Mum?’ To become a Care2Connect team member, the answer has to be a solid yes.