A Sutton care home was left short staffed when Covid-19 vaccinations were mandatory, a report has revealed.

David House in Wallington was inspected by the Care Quality Commission back in February and a report was published last week.

Inspectors found a “number of shortfalls” due to a staff shortage and gave the home a “requires improvement” rating.

The report said: “The service was short of staff. This was the result of staff leaving the service in November 2021 after it became a legal requirement for all care staff to be vaccinated against Covid-19 unless exempt.

“The registered manager did not have a deputy, assistant, senior or team leader at the time of the inspection. This placed all the responsibilities for leadership and for driving improvements on them and contributed to shortfalls we found.”

The care home in Sandy Lane South cares for eight adults with mental health needs.

The report said staff were caring and supported the residents and were trained to protect from abuse or infection.

It is the second time the service has been told to improve.

It received the same rating at an inspection in February 2021.

The home lost more than four members of staff when vaccinations were made mandatory by the government in November 2021 and scrapped in March 2022.

David House was assessed in four categories and was rated “good” in whether it was responsive and caring but “requires improvement” in whether the service was effective or well-led.

Not operating an “effective recruitment process” meant the care home was in breach of the Health and Social Care Act.

It also did not carry out enough one-to-one supervision meetings with staff which breached the act.

The report read: “The registered manager had a plan in place to increase the frequency of staff supervisions and to implement an appraisal programme.

They recognised this plan would be more readily implemented once a deputy manager or team leader had been employed.

“When they took place, supervision records showed discussions between the registered manager and  individual staff around issues such as medicines, people’s changing needs, training and happiness at work.

"This indicated that supervision meetings were meaningful for staff when they occurred.”

Overall inspectors asked the care home to draw up an action plan on how it will improve standards.

It will be monitored by the CQC and may be inspected sooner than planned if any concerning information was received.

A member of staff from David House said staffing is a problem across the industry and all efforts were being made to address the issues raised in the report.

The manager of David House was not available for further comment before this story was published.