• Community
  • Community substance misuse service

Archived: Swanswell Newbury

Overall: Good read more about inspection ratings

1 Station Road, Newbury, RG14 7LP 0300 003 7025

Provided and run by:
Swanswell Charitable Trust

Important: The provider of this service changed. See new profile

All Inspections

14 May 2019

During a routine inspection

We rated Swanswell Newbury as Good.

  • The service provided safe care. Premises where clients were seen were safe and clean. The number of clients on the caseload of the teams, and of individual members of staff, was not too high to prevent staff from giving each client the time they needed. Staff managed waiting lists well to ensure that patients who required urgent care were seen promptly. Staff assessed and managed risk well and followed good practice with respect to safeguarding.
  • Staff developed holistic, recovery-oriented care plans informed by a comprehensive assessment and in collaboration with clients. They provided a range of treatments that were informed by best-practice guidance and suitable to the needs of the clients.
  • Managers ensured that staff received training, supervision and appraisal. Staff worked well together as a team and with relevant services outside the organisation.
  • Staff understood and discharged their roles and responsibilities under the Mental Capacity Act 2005.
  • Staff treated clients with compassion and kindness, respected their privacy and dignity, and understood their individual needs. They actively involved clients and families and carers in care decisions.
  • The service was easy to access. Staff assessed and treated clients who required urgent care promptly and those who did not require urgent care did not wait too long to start treatment. The criteria for referral to the service did not exclude clients who would have benefitted from care.
  • The service was well-led and the governance processes ensured that that procedures relating to the work of the service ran smoothly.


  • Since the organisation had joined a larger group of charities, there was not yet a unified set of policies and procedures and staff had access to policies for the parent organisation as well as the ones specific to the service. No risk to service users arose from this, because staff understood all relevant clinical policies clearly understood, but there was scope for confusion amongst staff.
  • There was scope to improve staff morale. Staff told us that better terms and conditions offered to staff doing the same roles within other services run by the same provider had an impact on staff morale and retention.

11th - 12th October 2016

During a routine inspection

We do not currently rate independent standalone substance misuse services.

We found the following areas of good practice:

  • Risks were comprehensively assessed and the service had a strong focus on safeguarding adults and children from abuse. The comprehensive assessment they completed on first admission covered a wide range of health and social factors as well as drug use. The risk assessment and management plans completed from these were comprehensively documented. Access to the service was open which gave clients freedom around when they attended for assessment.

  • The service used National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance to focus their practice. Policies were created based on this guidance. We found good evidence of use of recognised tools and therapeutic techniques when working with clients. There was access to Naloxone and staff offered testing and vaccinations against blood borne viruses.

  • There was good medical cover from a local GP surgery. Staff liaised with the clients GP on admission to the service to ensure prescribing was conducted in a safe way.

  • Staff were experienced and qualified. They received mandatory and specialist training relevant to their role and they were supervised regularly by management. Auditing of care records fed into supervision sessions to ensure risk assessment and recovery plans were up to date.

  • Incidents and complaints were dealt with effectively and the outcomes of these were fed back to staff and clients. The service fulfilled its duty of candour.

  • Staff were caring and treated clients with dignity and respect. There was support available to families and carers.

  • Staff were proactive in engaging clients in the service. Clients that did not attend were followed up to ensure that they were safe. Staff were flexible in where and when they saw clients. There was a range of information available to clients.

  • The service was well led with good governance that allowed the management to have oversight of issues within the service. This ensured that they assessed their practice for effectiveness.

However, we also found the following issues that the service provider needs to improve:

  • There was a high staff turnover rate that impacted on caseloads of staff that remained working.

  • Naloxone was not locked in the cupboard it was being stored in. The needle exchange room was not locked when not in use.

  • There was not always evidence of a comprehensive physical health assessment. There was no record of calibration of the physical monitoring equipment.