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CQC finds improvement needed in two services at Gateshead hospital trust

Published:
28 June 2017
Provider:
Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust
Categories:
  • Media,
  • Mental health community services,
  • Mental health hospital services

England’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals has rated the community mental health services for older people provided by Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust as Requires Improvement and wards for older people with mental health problems as Inadequate following an inspection in December 2016.

These services were not inspected as part of the trust’s comprehensive inspection in 2015 and the trust continues to be rated as Good overall.

At this inspection, CQC looked at Cragside Court and Sunniside Unit, both wards for older people with mental health problems based at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead; and community mental health services for older people in Central and East Gateshead.

The full report including ratings for the provider’s core services are available on our website.

Dr Paul Lelliott, the Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals (and CQC lead for mental health), said:

“Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust provides both community and ward based mental health services for older people across Gateshead."

“We have significant concern that these services aren’t as safe as they should be or effective enough for the people using them.”

“We are most worried about Cragside Court and Sunniside Unit, at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital. These wards had not been adapted to meet the needs of older people or for those living with dementia."

“The layout of these wards did also not enable staff to see all areas and staff had not fully checked for fixtures that might prove hazardous to older people at risk of self-harm."

“The trust had not regularly assessed risk for each individual patient and the wards were overly restrictive. Staff did not provide activities for people on evenings or weekends and placed blanket restrictions on them. For example, people could not make their own hot drinks and snacks nor could they lock their bedroom doors.”

“Nurses in the community mental health services for older people had to use a patient record system that was not fit for purpose. The system did not support them to deliver safe or effective patient care and was potentially putting people at risk of harm."

“We have told the trust where they must improve and we will inspect again to ensure they have made the changes we have told them to.”

Areas where CQC has told the trust they must make improvements on their wards for older people with mental health problems:

  • The trust must ensure environmental risk assessments including for ligature points are completed for each room and action taken to mitigate any risks identified.
  • The trust must review blanket restrictions on Cragside Court and the Sunniside Unit to ensure that care is provided in a way that demonstrates that risks had been assessed on an individual basis.
  • Care plans must be reflective of people’s individual needs.
  • The trust must ensure that Cragside Court has enough personal alarms for all members of staff.
  • The trust must improve the state and quality of care records and ensure that care records are regularly audited to identify and address gaps in documentation.

Areas where CQC has told the trust they must make improvements to their community mental health services for older people:

  • The trust must ensure that the electronic patient record system used by the community mental health teams supports effective patient care.
  • The trust must ensure that the community mental health teams maintain an accurate, complete and contemporaneous record in respect of each service user, including a record of the care and treatment provided to the service user and of decisions taken in relation to the care and treatment provided.
  • The trust must ensure that all staff receive regular supervision and that this is monitored in line with the trust’s supervision policy.

Ends

For further information please contact CQC Regional Engagement Officer Kerri James by email kerri.james@cqc.org.uk or by phone on 07464 92 9966. 

Journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here.

Please note: the press office is unable to advise members of the public on health or social care matters. For general enquiries, please call 03000 61 61 61.

Last updated:
27 June 2017

Notes to editors

This report follows a focussed inspection on the quality of services provided at Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust Inspection teams include a range of clinical and other experts including experts by experience. 

Whenever CQC inspects it will always ask the following five questions of every service:
  • Are they safe?
  • Are they effective?
  • Are they caring?
  • Are they responsive to people’s needs?
  • Are they well-led?
Since 1 April, registered providers of health and social care services have been required to display their ratings on their premises and on their websites so that the public can see their rating quickly and easily.
 

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.


We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.


We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.