The Complete Group | Specialists in Complex Health Care in the Home




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  • Complex care specialist Complete shortlisted for leading award

    LaingBuisson Independent Specialist Care Awards 2015 Finalist

    Specialist nurse-led complex care provider The Complete Group has been shortlisted for a prestigious healthcare sector award.

    The firm have been named as a finalist in the Care Pathways category of the Independent Specialist Care Awards organised by LaingBuisson, the UK’s most highly regarded provider of information and market intelligence on the independent health, community care and childcare sectors.

    Complete provides nurse-led complex care for children and adults across the UK, enabling people with challenging conditions including brain and spinal cord injuries, motor neurone disease and muscular dystrophy to lead independent lives at home.

    The award submission highlighted the integrated way in which Complete delivers care and support designed to maximise positive outcomes, independence and quality of life.

    A key feature of this approach is the way that the Personal Assistants who deliver client care on a day-to-day basis provide high level support – such as ventilator care, naso-gastric feeding, catheter and skin care – that reduces the incidence of infection and the need for medical care or hospitalisation, enabling clients to stay healthy and at home.

    Alongside this clinical support, Pass also enable clients to take part in family life and to work, study, pursue hobbies and interests, travel and socialise, all of which contributes to their overall well-being and progress.

    Complete Director Dawn Matthews-Smith said: “We are delighted to have been shortlisted for this award, which recognises our focus on maximising positive outcomes that can lead to greater independence and reduced need for support services.

    “The shortlisting is also testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff to provide the highest quality of care.”

    The Complete Group will find out if they have been successful at an awards evening on 11 March.

  • University opens doors to learning for Complete client

    University opens doors to learning for Complete client

    Photo caption: So happy: The Complete Group client Sarah Yeo has gained an Open University degree in Health and Social Care

    A client with nurse-led complex care specialists The Complete Group is celebrating after gaining her Open University degree.

    Sarah Yeo, from Bodmin, graduated with a degree in Health and Social Care in October and is now looking into continuing her Open University studies with a Masters degree, with the support of family, friends and her Complete team of Kate Denton, Rebecca Adams, Katie Morris, Nakitta Cutting and Emma Morris.

    She says: “I decided to do the degree after having an operation which, resulted in complications and me spending a lot of time in hospital. It made me realise that I wanted to do more for other people and something more beneficial.”

    Sarah, who suffered an accident when she was 18 months old that left her with quadriplegia and requiring full ventilation, moved to independent living in 2010 with another care provider.

    However, she was so unhappy with the arrangement that she gave up her studies in 2012 and became very depressed.

    The following year, she decided “enough was enough”, restarted her degree and started the process of moving to Complete, which she had heard about at the Duke of Cornwall Spinal Treatment Centre in Salisbury.

    Sarah says: “I wasn’t taking no for an answer. At the beginning of 2014 it finally happened and I haven’t been as happy as I am now since I decided to move to independent living.
    “Now I’ve finally completed my degree, I am looking at doing my Masters in Advancing Healthcare Practice. I have a job with the National Autistic Society and would like to use my degree to develop my career further.”

    The Complete Group specialises in providing complex care to adults and children with spinal or brain injuries and other disabling conditions.

    Complete Director Dawn Matthews-Smith said: “We are delighted at Sarah’s achievement and are looking forward to supporting her in her studies in the future.  Sarah is an excellent example of the way our nurse-led complex services support clients to lead the independent lifestyles of their choice.”

  • Complete Group Director highlights ‘exciting’ changes

    Complete Group Director highlights ‘exciting’ changes

    A new structure, a recruitment drive and access to integrated, 24-hour care and support services are key features of “exciting” developments at nurse-led complex care at home provider The Complete Group, says its Director.

    Dawn Matthews-Smith took over the role earlier this year, following the acquisition of Complete by strategic outsourcing company MITIE Group PLC, where she was director of community living, developing supported living and extra care housing solutions.

    Since joining Complete, Dawn has overseen new initiatives including dividing Complete’s operations into five regions, each with its own lead nurse, and doubling the number of experienced nurses previously employed within the Complete team.

    In another structural change, Complete’s personal assistants, who deliver day-to-day care, are now led by care co-ordinators, reporting directly to their nursing colleagues.

    The developments reflect Complete’s positioning as a specialist in nurse-led complex care at home for people with conditions including brain injury, spinal cord injury and neurological conditions causing severe disability, while MITIE’s Mihomecare service provides flexible home care services for people who need lower levels of support to carry on living independently at home.

    Elsewhere, Complete has created a new paediatric complex division and is in the process of recruiting physiotherapists and occupational therapists, to avoid delays in accessing NHS services. The company also now has access to a specialist falls prevention service.

    Dawn said: “Things have been moving very quickly at Complete during a very exciting time for the company.

    “Our focus at Complete is very much on delivering a nurse-led service, delivering 24/7 higher acuity care, while also working a joined up way with Mihomecare to ensure that all levels of care needs are met.

    “As part of this, we are also able to refer clients to our Care Agency, which provides a matching service with self-employed personal assistants, for example for people with a spinal cord injury that has stabilised, so that they require reduced nurse-led care and may be looking for care that they can direct themselves.

    “Across all our services, our ethos is very much about choice and supporting people along the journey to independence in the most effective way.”

    Dawn brings to her Complete role more than a decade’s experience in senior roles in the private, not-for profit and public sectors, in sectors including health, social care, housing and education.

  • The Complete Group shortlisted for prestigious care awards

    National nurse-led complex health care provider The Complete Group has been selected as a multiple finalist in awards schemes celebrating excellence in the care sector.

    Complete, who provides specialist care that enables adults and children with spinal cord or brain injuries and other disabling conditions to live independently at home, has been shortlisted in the two categories of the Great West Midlands Care Awards.

    Care Co-ordinator Lee Tarrant has been chosen as a finalist in the Frontline Leader award, for his strong leadership and effective management of the care package of an acquired brain injury client in Birmingham, which has included ensuring the client has avoided hospital admission for the last two years.

    Liuda Kozel, also a Care Co-ordinator, has been shortlisted in the Putting People First category. Her nomination highlighted the way she works collaboratively with her client, who has complex care needs, including by taking as much time as necessary to discuss procedures that he is reluctant to agree to and why they will benefit him.

    In the Great South West Care Awards, Personal Assistants Kate Denton, Nakkita Cutting, Katie Morris and Rebecca Adams have been nominated in the Care Team category, for the way their person-centred support of a quadriplegic and fully ventilated client contributes to her independence and quality of life.

    Meanwhile, Care Co-ordinator Lucy Clayton has been shortlisted in the Great Yorkshire and Humberside Care Awards, in the Putting People First category. Lucy leads a team of Personal Assistants supporting a York-based client with a spinal injury, enabling her to be fully involved in the lives of her young children.

    The Great West Midlands Care Awards, the Great South West Care Awards and the Great Yorkshire and Humberside Care Awards are among the regional schemes that make up the Great British Care Awards, which recognise outstanding achievement in both the home care and care home professions.

    The winners of the South West awards will be announced on 17 October at a ceremony at The Passenger Shed, Bristol and of the West Midlands awards on 24 October at an event at the NationalMotorcycleMuseum, Solihull. The Yorkshire and Humberside awards will take place on 31 October.

    Dawn Matthews-Smith, director of complex care at Complete, said: “We have a strong track record in the Great British Care Awards and it is very pleasing to have been recognised again this year.

    “At Complete, our commitment is to person-centred care and excellence in everything we do and this shines through in all our shortlisted nominations.”

  • The Complete Group nurse to speak at national conference

    Marian Pearce

    A team member at leading nurse-led complex care provider The Complete Group is to raise awareness of how patients can be supported to lead fulfilling, independent lives after leaving intensive care at a high profile national conference.

    Clinical Nurse Specialist Marian Pearce will be one of the guest speakers at the British Association of Clinical Care Nurses (BACCN), which will take place on 8-9 September at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama in Cardiff. The annual conference attracts around 250 delegates from across the UK and overseas, including from Australia, Hong Kong and New Zealand.

    Marian joined Complete – a specialist in home-based, nurse-led complex care for adults and children with the most disabling conditions, including brain and spinal cord injuries – at the start of 2014, after 27 years in the NHS.

    Her NHS roles have included working in intensive care units in hospitals in Dudley and Ipswich, where she had first-hand experience of the grieving process that staff go through when patients die.

    Marian has also identified that nurses and other intensive care staff frequently experience a lack of closure when patients are able to move on to rehabilitation units, because they rarely – or never – find out about the patients’ future progress.

    She said: “In my Complete role, I am now seeing that there can be very positive outcomes for patients who have moved on from intensive care and rehabilitation.

    “Complete clients, with conditions like those of the patients I used to wonder about, are able to live independently at home as a result of receiving high quality, nurse-led complex care.

    “My presentation is designed to give intensive care nurses a better understanding of what support is available for their former patients. In turn, this will help them to better support patients’ families, by helping them to raise awareness of what services are available post-rehabilitation.”

    Other speakers at the BACCN conference include Major General Ewan Carmichael, Director General of the Army Medical Services, who will be speaking on leadership in critical care.

  • Experts focus on manual handling

    Complete has taken part in a health sector event taking a fresh look at manual handling and staffing levels required.

    Simon Sinclair, Head of Commissioning at Complete, joined delegates including case managers, other care professionals, lawyers and insurers at It Takes Two?, an event held on 1 April to launch, discuss and debate a recent research report of the same name by medico-legal experts HFH Consulting.

    The report examined the use of and need for “doubling up” – using two carers for clients requiring manual handling. It concluded: “The moving and handling of people is governed by a variety of legislation but evidence suggests that many NHS trusts and private care agencies have adopted ‘blanket policies’ in this regard in the past, always erring on the side of caution and providing double up care when a hoist is needed regardless of carer capability, adaptation of the environment, equipment provision or client choice.

    “Real life evidence has proven that thousands of these individuals are able to manage well with lone carers and prefer the flexibility this provides. Many clients wish to participate in their care and enjoy the one-to-one relationship that single carer packages afford them.”

    Simon said: “At Complete, we make it a priority to always stay up-to-date with new developments in complex care and this fresh perspective on manual handling makes for interesting reading and discussion.”

    He added: “All the services we provide at Complete are tailored to individual client needs identified in a clinical assessment carried out by our in-house registered nurses, with the client’s safety and well-being key priorities.”

    More information on the It Takes Two? event and access to the research report is available here.

  • Staff from The Complete Group hit the heights for Headway


    Staff members from complex care provider The Complete Group have raised nearly £1000 for a national charity with a tandem parachute jump.

    Rota Manager Sarah Mullinder and IT Assistant Sam Price both took part in a 10,000ft skydive on 21 April to support the work of brain injury association Headway.

    The skydive is one of the latest initiatives from Complete’s in-house Fundraising Group, which develops and co-ordinates activities within the company in aid of good causes.

    The Fundraising Group has selected Headway as its chosen charity for 2013, reflecting Complete’s specialism in providing complex care to adults and children with brain injuries, along with spinal cord injuries and other disabling conditions, enabling them to live independently at home.

    Sarah and Sam responded to a Fundraising Group appeal for volunteers for the skydive and travelled to Tilstock Airfield, near Whitchurch, Shropshire, on 21 April to prepare for and make their skydives with specialists Skydive Tilstock.

    For Sam, it was a day of firsts, for as well as it being his first parachute jump, it was his first ever time in a plane.

    Sam said: “It was my first time in a plane, so I had to get over that anxiety first before even thinking about the jump, but I have to say it was definitely the best thing I’ve ever done.”

    Sam and Sarah enjoyed fantastic Bank Holiday weather for the jump which had been postponed on a number of occasions over the past couple of months.

    “We’ve been waiting to do this jump for ages, I think it was originally planned for August, but bad weather has also got in our way, so were relieved to be finally given the green light,” he said.

    The duo have been busy collecting sponsors and have raised around £800 for Headway.

    Simon Sinclair, Head of Commissioning at Complete, said: “Congratulations to Sarah and Sam on finally completing their skydive which has raised funds to support Headway’s very valuable work.”

    Sarah and Sam are still accepting donations which can be made online via

  • Personal health budgets: a brave new world of commissioning

    Personal health budgets: a brave new world of commissioning

    A significant development in the personalisation agenda will take place next month when people receiving NHS continuing healthcare will be given the right to ask for a personal health budget.

    In this article, Simon Sinclair, Head of Commissioning at national complex carers The Complete Group looks at some of the implications for commissioners and highlights the benefits of working with established providers.

    A significant evolution in the personalisation agenda is rapidly approaching.

    From April 2014, around 56,000 people receiving NHS continuing healthcare – NHS-funded healthcare for individuals with complex ongoing healthcare needs but who are not in hospital – will have the right to ask for a personal health budget (PHB). This could be in the form of someone controlling how money to provide their healthcare is spent, as with some local authority social care funding.

    In October 2014, those with the right to ask will gain the right to have a PHB, which will be declined only if clinical or financial grounds are deemed to make it unviable.

    PHBs are a logical evolution for personalisation, the process of putting people at the centre of identifying their needs and enabling them to make good decisions about the way they are supported. Under PHBs, these care decisions must be supported by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs), to fulfil their statutory duty of care.

    For Mari Gay, director of quality and patient safety for NHS South Worcestershire CCG, PHBs “clearly fit with the future direction of the NHS”. Highlighting the changes to her CCG’s residents, she says: “They allow people to work with the NHS so that they can receive more personal care which fits with an individual’s life and offers support that is right for them.”

    CCGs face a significant learning curve as, in the words of Health Minister Norman Lamb, they develop the “capacity and capability to deliver PHBs.” In a 2013 paper, the Nuffield Trust highlighted one challenge for CCGs as fostering “a diverse market with a greater variety of providers”, to meet the individual needs of budget holders.

    Vidhya Alakeson, author of the Delivering Personal Health Budgets guide, agrees. She says: “Budget holders will demand greater flexibility and a broader, more preventive range of care services than the NHS currently buys.”

    New entrants may make the market more interesting, but established providers, including those working with clients and local authorities on direct payment arrangements, have much to offer.

    At Complete, we have almost 20 years’ experience in delivering home-based, long-term care and rehabilitative support for people with complex health needs, including brain and spinal cord injuries and other disabling conditions. Central to our approach is working with clients, commissioners and other stakeholders, within budgets, to decide how best needs can be met, best outcomes achieved for clients, within the parameters of their condition, and best value delivered.

    This ongoing process embraces the support required to facilitate individual lifestyles and greater independence – including education, work or holidays – and enables us to respond to changing needs, perhaps by increasing care as conditions worsen or reducing support as rehabilitation progresses. So flexibility is crucial, including our ability to vary support from day to day or week to week.

    While PHBs are an exciting evolution for personalisation, CCGs need time to develop the capacity and capability to deliver PHBs. New entrants to the market will also need time to find their feet – and in that respect, the experience of proven, established providers is likely to offer a distinct advantage.

  • The Complete Group secures new care contract

    National care specialist The Complete Group has secured a new contract, developing the services it provides in the West Country.

    Complete has been successful in its application to become a provider of home-based complex care services in North Somerset to adults with a physical and/or sensory disability.

    The contract, which will last for up to five years, has been jointly commissioned by North Somerset Council and North Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group, which together fund the care packages Complete would provide. The contract recognises Complete – which was previously included on the commissioners’ list of accredited suppliers – as an approved provider of services for complex care clients.

    Complete specialises in providing tailored care packages adults and children with spinal or brain injuries and other disabling conditions, including cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy, which enable clients to lead independent lives at home.

    Simon Sinclair, Head of Commissioning at Complete, said: “We are delighted that the commissioners have awarded us this extended contract and look forward to delivering services that make a real difference to clients’ quality of life in North Somerset.

    “We will be working closely with the commissioners to provide complex care that supports clients to enjoy maximum independence and to work, study, socialise and travel.”

    Complete’s successful approach to complex care provision in the home has led to the firm being selected as a finalist in the Great British Home Care Awards, which will be announced on 6 June, and in the complex care provider category of the HealthInvestor Awards 2014, which will be presented on 11 June.

  • The Complete Group steps into national awards spotlight

    National complex health care provider The Complete Group has been shortlisted in an awards scheme celebrating excellence in home care services.

    Complete, which provides specialist care that enables adults and children with spinal cord or brain injuries and other disabling conditions to live independently at home, has been chosen as a finalist in the Care Employer category of the Great British Home Care Awards.

    The awards recognise outstanding achievement in the home care sector and are made up of a series of regional awards, including the Great West Midlands Care Awards, in which Complete was a finalist in the Care Employer category in 2013.

    Complete’s award submission highlighted the quality of its initial and ongoing staff training programmes, which support the company’s focus on achieving the best possible outcome for each client.

    Winners of the regional awards go forward to the finals of the Great British Home Care Awards along with a selection of other outstanding candidates, like Complete. Complete representatives will attend a judging day on 30 April and the winners will be announced at a gala dinner on 6 June at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

    Simon Sinclair, Complete’s Head of Commissioning, said: “We are delighted to have been selected for the national finals of these highly regarded awards.

    “As an employer, we recognise that the quality of our services depends on the quality of our teams and are committed to investing in developing our people, so that they have the skills and knowledge needed to support our clients in the most effective way.”

    Complete has a strong track record in the awards. The company won the Care Team category of the Great North East Care Awards in 2012, earning a place in the national finals, and in 2013 was shortlisted in the Care Team category of both the Great South East Care Awards and the Great West Midlands Care Awards.

    The company’s consistently strong performance in health and care sector awards has also been highlighted by its shortlisting, for the third year running, in the Complex Care Provider category of the HealthInvestor awards, which will be announced on 11 June at a ceremony at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.