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West London NHS Trust rated Good by CQC

21/12/2018

The Care Quality Commission have released the following statement.

West London NHS Trust has been rated Good overall by the Care Quality Commission.

The trust, which was formerly known as West London Mental Health Trust, was rated Outstanding for being caring, Good for being effective, responsive and well-led, and Requires Improvement for being safe, during the inspection which took place on dates between August and October 2018.

West London NHS Trust provides mental health and an increasing range of community healthcare services in west London and Berkshire.

CQC inspected six services on this occasion: forensic inpatient/secure wards; mental health crisis services; mental health wards for working age adults; wards for older people with mental health problems; a child and adolescent mental health ward; and community-based mental health services for working age adults. The high secure services were inspected earlier in the year and this report was published in August 2018.

There had been a significant improvement in the trust ratings, but of particular note was the change in ratings of the forensic services which had gone from being inadequate three years ago to outstanding at this inspection.

CQC found that the trust had a high calibre board that was determined to make the necessary changes to provide high quality care to the communities it serves.

The trust had a strong, cohesive senior leadership team which had succeeded in changing the culture of the organisation. It was well regarded by staff and external organisations and its chief executive officer was recognised as an inspiring leader.

There was a commitment to work in partnership with patients and, increasingly with carers. Patients were involved in the development of their care and treatment plans, as well as ward matters and clinical governance.

Staff engagement had improved - as shown by the most recent staff survey and the survey undertaken by the General Medical Council that showed that doctors at the trust were positive about the training provided.

The trust was participating actively in the local care system and with NHS partners and academic institutions to drive progress and develop new models of care, such as community mental health rehabilitation services. The trust's participation in the North London partnership for forensic services meant that an increasing number of patients were receiving their care closer to home.

There were some areas where the trust needed to improve, including:

  • The recruitment and retention of staff remains challenging for the trust although they were actively working to address this.
  • The Tony Hillis wing at St Bernard's hospital, which was the site for several inpatient services and other facilities, was not a suitable place to provide modern healthcare.
  • The trust needed to further improve the consistency of the care and treatment as there are a few teams or wards which are not up to the standard of the rest. The trust is aware that these wards and teams need to improve and additional support was being provided.
  • The trust needed to make sure there was more consistency in the storing of patient records, both paper and electronic. Staff kept records, but not always in the same place as their colleagues, which made them hard to find, especially in an emergency situation.

Dr Paul Lelliott, CQC's Deputy Chief Inspector (and lead for mental health) said: "The care that patients receive from West London NHS Trust is generally good and sometimes outstanding. The improvements made to the trust services are a tribute to the leadership team and to all staff working at the trust. It is a well-led trust with a board made up of talented people committed to driving up standards.

"We rated the forensic mental health service as Inadequate in 2015 – it is now rated as Outstanding. This is an exceptional achievement for a service that comprises 19 wards.

"There is still more to do though - as reflected in the fact that the trust is still rated as Requires Improvement for the safe key question, but overall I am impressed with the progress that has been made."

You can read the report in full when it is published on CQC's website.

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