Hertfordshire NHS trust rated good by CQC watchdog

PUBLISHED: 08:28 14 May 2018

Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, which has its headquarters at The Colonnades in Hatfield. Picture: Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust

Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, which has its headquarters at The Colonnades in Hatfield. Picture: Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust

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An NHS trust which provides health and social care for people with mental ill health and learning disabilities has been rated as good by health watchdog the Care Quality Commission, but concerns surrounding patient safety have been raised.

Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust's chief executive Tom Cahill
.Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust's chief executive Tom Cahill .

The CQC has released a report following its inspection in January of the Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust.

It says: “Staff showed caring, compassionate attitudes, were proud to work for the NHS trust, and were dedicated to their roles.

“Care of patients focused on their strengths and areas of independence and staff responded quickly and effectively to the changing needs of patients.”

The inspectors said they saw many examples of innovation and projects that had been trialled and then implemented, and that leadership was strong, visible and effective in most areas.

However, concern was raised that potential ligature anchor points on adult mental health wards had not all been identified and – where they had – the risks posed had not been mitigated. Immediate action was taken by the NHS trust.

The foundation trust did not follow the NHS framework for reporting serious incidents, and low staffing on two wards – child and adolescent mental health, and people with a learning disability or autism – was highlighted as an issue.

Seclusion occurred outside of designated seclusion rooms – with no clearly documented reason – and two of the seclusion rooms had environmental isssues and were not compliant with the Mental Health Act code of practice. The NHS trust took immediate action to address this.

The NHS trust’s chief executive, Tom Cahill, said action was already being taken regarding the areas requiring improvement – including baseline staffing levels and some environment safety concerns.

He said: “We’re proud to be one of a number of mental health and learning disability trusts that have received a good rating across England.

“The report provides a clear endorsement of our hardworking and dedicated staff.

“These results come at a time when demand for our services is higher than ever. We have continued to improve while treating greater numbers of people.”

To read the full report, visit www.cqc.org.uk/provider/RWR/reports.

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