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The Huntercombe Centre - Birmingham Good

The provider of this service changed - see old profile

We are carrying out a review of quality at The Huntercombe Centre - Birmingham. We will publish a report when our review is complete. Find out more about our inspection reports.

Inspection Summary

Overall summary & rating


Updated 28 July 2017

We rated The Huntercombe Centre - Birmingham as good because:

  • Feedback we received about the service from patients, families and carers and stakeholders was excellent. The service was described as open, transparent and responsive to patients needs and we saw a clear focus on patient rehabilitation and discharge planning.
  • We found a wide range of risk assessments and care plans that had been completed by the multidisciplinary team which evidenced the voice of patients using the service. Care and treatment records were comprehensive, holistic and recovery focussed, were in date and showed evidence of frequent reviews which reflected patient progress.

  • Morale amongst staff at the service was excellent. The leadership culture was described as open and accessible and staff felt valued and listened to by the registered manager. All staff that we spoke with reported an environment that promoted mutual support and teamwork.

  • Patients were able to provide feedback on the service, be involved in the running of the service and were supported to undertake voluntary jobs. Initiatives were in place to recognise and celebrate patient contribution and we saw this was promoted through regular community meetings between patients and staff.

  • Attendance at mandatory training was high and was monitored by the registered manager. All staff eligible for an annual appraisal had received one and clinical and managerial supervision arrangements were in place for all staff. 

    All staff were suitably skilled and qualified to perform their role and disclosure barring service and professional registration checks were complete.

  • Safeguarding referrals had been made to the local authority where appropriate and statutory notifications completed by senior staff and the registered manager. Mental Health Act and Mental Capacity Act requirements were being met and paperwork relating to the detention of patients was complete and showed evidence of patient consultation and documentation of their views.

  • A range of audits and key indicators were in place to monitor the service's performance. Outcome measures and rating scales were used to check on the effectiveness of clinical intervention and patients were able to access psychology and occupational therapy based interventions.

  • All incidents that should be reported had been. We saw that investigations had been commenced immediately following an incident, learning had been identified and changes made to mitigate against future occurrences.

  • Environmental and health and safety checks were routinely completed including bi annual ligature risk audits, fire safety checks and portable appliance testing. All staff had access to a personal alarm and the system was serviced annually and checked monthly by the service's maintenance department.

Inspection areas



Updated 28 July 2017

We rated safe as good because:

  • A multidisciplinary approach to risk assessment and formulation was in place at the service. We found that comprehensive risk assessments had been completed in all records reviewed, were in date and had been updated following incidents.

  • Staffing at the service was reviewed daily and could be changed to meet patient need. Sickness levels were low and the registered manager ensured that sufficient staff were available to facilitate therapeutic activities and community outings with patients.

  • Staff that worked at the service were able to access a range of mandatory training opportunities including equality and diversity, risk assessment and risk management and Prevent training. The average attendance rate at mandatory training by staff was 92% and this was monitored by the registered manager and audited monthly.

  • Environmental safety checks had been completed and included a ligature risk assessment audit, fire risk assessment and monthly checks of the staff personal alarm system. All areas of the service appeared clean, were well maintained and had sufficient furnishings.

  • All staff that we spoke with were aware of their responsibilities to report incidents. We found that investigations following incidents had been completed promptly and that recommendations made had been completed, including reviews of the services policies and procedures.

  • Safeguarding referrals had been made to the local authority where appropriate and statutory notifications completed by senior staff and the registered manager. Safeguarding policies were in place to provide guidance to staff and the provider had developed a three year safeguarding strategy.


  • Staff at the service had not sought advice from the local pharmacy on two occasions when medication storage fridges had exceeded recommended temperatures.



Updated 28 July 2017

We rated effective as good because:

  • We found detailed and comprehensive assessments of patient needs in all records. Care planning was holistic, took into account patient strengths and needs and was recovery focussed.

  • Physical health monitoring was evident in all care records reviewed. Patients were supported to book annual physical health checks at their local general practice surgery and outcomes of this were shared with the Huntercombe Centre and updated in care and treatment records.

  • A range of outcome measures and rating scales were in use at the service and were completed by nursing staff, psychologists and the occupational therapists.

  • Patients were able to access a psychologist at the service and were offered a range of psychological interventions including cognitive behavioural therapy, coping skills, anger management and relapse prevention.

  • Staff were experienced and qualified to undertake their roles. Professional registration checks were made for qualified staff and disclosure barring checks were in place for all staff. Management and clinical supervision was provided for staff and all staff eligible to have an annual appraisal had received one.

  • Regular and effective multidisciplinary team meetings and handovers between staff took place daily. Stakeholders reported that the service worked well with them and was highly regarded in its approach to providing a rehabilitation setting with a focus on patient recovery and discharge.



Updated 28 July 2017

We rated caring as good because:

  • Throughout our inspection, we observed care and support provided by staff that promoted kindness, respect and dignity.

  • All patients that we spoke with provided positive feedback on their experiences of being cared for at the service. Patients described staff as helpful and polite, and activities provided by the service were described as therapeutic and meaningful.

  • The feedback provided by the carers and family members of patients using the service was excellent. The service and staff were described as brilliant and we were told that families and carers were kept informed and updated about patient wellbeing.

  • Detailed individualised care plans were in place for all patients that included practical and emotional support.

  • Patients were involved in service development and were able to attend regular community meetings. Initiatives were in place to recognise patients contributions to the service via a "Huntercombe hero" scheme and we saw that patients achievements were recognised and celebrated by staff.

  • Patients were able to become involved in the recruitment of staff at the service and had been encouraged to develop their own interview questions with support from staff.



Updated 28 July 2017

We rated responsive as good because:

  • All referrals to the service were assessed within the service target of 72 hours and there were no delays in providing treatment for patients assessed as suitable for the service.
  • We found that discharge planning was evident in all care and treatment records reviewed and the service retained a rehabilitation focus.

  • There had been no delayed discharges reported in the year prior to our inspection and no readmissions to the service within 90 days during the same period.

  • There were a range of facilities available for patient use including kitchens for practicing activities of daily living skills and meal preparation. A weekly activity timetable was in place and included daily breakfast groups, community trips, arts and crafts sessions and disco's and movie nights at weekends.

  • All patients had individual care plans that had been completed and identified their spiritual and cultural beliefs and how they could be supported by the service to access support in these areas.

  • Guidance for patients on the process of making a complaint was available in an easy read format and displayed on a notice board within the communal area of the service. All patients received a letter in easy read format detailing the outcome of their complaint following investigation by the service.



Updated 28 July 2017

We rate well-led as good because:

  • Morale amongst staff at the service was excellent. All staff that we spoke with provided positive feedback about the registered manager. The leadership culture at the hospital was described as open and accessible and staff reported feeling valued and listened to.

  • All staff that we spoke with described a culture of mutual support and teamwork at the service. Staff that we spoke with reported that they were given the opportunity to give feedback on the service, what worked well and to identify areas for future service development.

  • Leadership development opportunities were available for qualified staff and support workers. Annual appraisals were completed and staff could access profession specific supervision.

  • The staff sickness rate for the period March 2016 to March 2017 was low at 3.5%, and at the time of our inspection there were no grievance procedures being pursued by staff and there were no allegations of bullying or harassment.

  • The registered manager for the service reported that they had sufficient autonomy and authority to make changes to the service to improve the effectiveness and quality of care provided and were well supported by senior managers in the organisation to do so.

  • Robust governance systems were in place to measure the effectiveness of the service using key performance indicators. Regular governance meetings were held locally at the service and outcomes were communicated at regional and national governance meetings.

Checks on specific services

Wards for people with a learning disability or autism


Updated 18 May 2016

Long stay or rehabilitation mental health wards for working age adults


Updated 28 July 2017