Rochdale care homes receive oral hygiene ratings as part of elderly oral health initiative

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Care homes in Rochdale have been given oral hygiene ratings as part of a new initiative designed to improve oral health among residents. 

Twenty-five homes in the area have received 5-star ratings, with others encouraged to step up measures to achieve the same objective. The ratings reflect each home’s commitment to providing oral hygiene assistance and helping residents to maintain good dental health. 

The ratings scheme was introduced by RIS Healthcare, which is responsible for delivering oral health programmes for elderly people across the borough. The aim of the programme is to encourage care homes to prioritise better oral health provision for residents by encouraging staff training and improving oral health education. 

Poor oral hygiene contributes to an increased risk of gum disease and tooth loss, but it can also be a risk factor for many other conditions and potentially life-threatening illnesses, including strokes, heart disease and dementia. 

Deputy manager at Stansfield Hall Care Home, Jamie Lee Aughey, praised the scheme, saying the benefits had far exceeded the expectations of the staff team. Since the programme was introduced, general and dental health standards have improved, and there have been no chest infections in the home in the last eight months. Prior to the oral hygiene scheme, this was a common ailment among patients. The team has approached the programme with enthusiasm, and everyone has made an effort to learn, to develop new skills and to use their knowledge to provide better care for patients. 

The RIS Healthcare programme has also received plaudits from Councillor Sara Rowbotham, cabinet member for health and wellbeing at Rochdale Borough Council.

There are currently 41 care homes across the borough involved in the scheme, with over 1,400 residents benefiting from new oral hygiene measures.

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