A residential care home for people with disabilities has been rated ‘Inadequate’ after a national watchdog found patients to be unsafe due to a lack of staff.

Homewards Limited, at 48 and 51 Leonard Road, Chingord, cares for seven people with learning disabilities or autism across two properties.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) report, published on October 25, rated the service as ‘Inadequate’ following an inspection in August.

Inspectors wrote: “Staff were identified to work excessive hours… This put people at risk of unsafe care as staff were not having a sufficient break before caring for vulnerable people.”

CQC inspectors also found several safety hazards, including we found loose cables in bedrooms.

The service had an outdoor washing machine and the electrical source was deemed to pose a health and safety risk as they were using an extension cable and not an outdoor plug.

Inspectors added: “The service was free from malodour and was generally clean but, people’s bedroom windows and a downstairs bathroom were unclean, and wires were found hanging from a bedroom which posed a health and safety risk to people.”

Staff were also criticised for not supporting residents to have maximum choice and control of their lives.

The CQC report did praise staff for safely administering medicines correctly and for their ability to identify and protect against abuse.

Care home manager, Qasim Mahmood, said the poor rating was a result of the home having fired two members of staff prior to the inspection.

He said, while the staff had now been replaced, at the time, the home had been in a transitional period of recruitment.

Mr Mahmood said he had challenged the report and was awaiting a meeting with CQC representatives.

The service has been put in special measures and will be reviewed by CQC within six months.