Working in a care home

Oct / 2021

Sue Phipps is Head of Care at Accurocare’s St. John’s care home. We sat down with Sue to find out about her role and the valuable advice she would give to someone thinking about a career in care.

How long have you worked in the care industry?

I’ve been working in the care sector for over 30 years, the last 17 of which I’ve been part of the St John’s family based in Oxford. St. John’s is based in the city centre, which is a beautiful and unique setting for a care home.

Tell us what happens during a typical day for the Head of Care

My day starts at 7.30am and my first task is to attend handover from the Senior on nights. I then allocate work to the teams on shift that day and set them on their way.

One of my key daily responsibilities is to carry out the medication rounds. I visit each resident – once in the morning and again at lunchtime – to give them their prescribed medication. It’s obviously an important task and a nice opportunity to see the residents and find out what’s going on in their world.

By mid-morning, if any of the teams need help, I will assist with any personal care or residents needing extra support, otherwise you’ll find me in the office catching up with paperwork. This includes checking the diary to see if any residents have off-site appointments coming up, such as hospital or dentist visits. We always send along a member of staff with the resident, so I allocate team members to each appointment.

We understand that individual care plans form an important part of your role too

Absolutely. At Accurocare we treat everyone as per their wishes detailed in their individual care plan. We record every daily detail of their care and review every personal care plan at least once a month to ensure we always meet their needs.

I carry out care plan reviews as per resident of the day and update the plans when, for example, doctors change a resident’s medication, or their wishes or preferences change. I make sure any changes are recorded and passed on to the next shift manager.

What goes on in the care home whilst you’re working away behind the scenes?

Residents can participate in activities throughout the day if they so wish, such as arts and crafts, music and games. Thanks to Covid testing, families can now visit and spend time with their loved ones. All visits are carefully managed to minimise the risk to our residents. We oversee these visits throughout the afternoon. It’s wonderful to see families being reunited.

And finally…

What would you say to someone who might be considering a career in care?

I’d say ‘Go for it!’. The best aspect of working at Accurocare is the feeling of family. We all know each other well and every single member of the team is friendly, helpful and supportive. I’ve known some of our long-term residents for several years, and along with my colleagues they feel more like family to me now. When work is like this, the days go quickly, and it really doesn’t feel like a job.

Thank you, Sue, we’ll see you at 7.30am tomorrow!

If you’re interested in a career in care, you can submit your CV using the careers form or contact us directly at the home closest to you.