The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has published a report today following a focused unannounced inspection of the acute wards for adults of working age and psychiatric intensive care units at Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust, which took place in February 2022.

The unannounced inspection took place to check whether specific improvements had been made following previous inspections in May to July 2021.

Angela Hillery, chief executive of LPT said: “It has been a consistent part of our Step up to Great improvement journey to put improved patient experiences and safety as our highest priority, and we are pleased that the CQC has recognised that significant progress continues to be made by our staff and leaders.

“The CQC have moved up our ratings in this core service in recognition of these improvements in the two key domains they inspected – Safety and Responsiveness.

  • The Safety domain of the service has moved up from Inadequate to Requires Improvement
  • The Responsive domain has moved up from Requires Improvement to Good for this service.

This is a true testament of the hard work and commitment of all of the staff involved, and we are proud that the CQC has recognised continued improvement.”

The CQC did not inspect the other domains of Effective, Caring and Well-led hence our overall rating for these domains remain the same and the overall core service rating remains Requires Improvement.

The CQC report concludes that ‘The Trust have met all actions required in the enforcement action issued at the last inspection.’

The inspection focused specifically on whether the following actions had been taken by LPT since the 2021 inspection:

  • making it easier for patients to call for help in an emergency
  • ensuring that people no longer had to sleep in shared accommodation
  • protecting patients’ privacy and dignity.

We are pleased that the CQC report outlines these improvements in their report:

  • Across all wards at the Bradgate Mental Health Unit (BMHU), all patients are risk assessed for a wrist worn personal alarm, which could be used to summon help in an emergency. Where patients had declined an alarm, staff documented this decision. Patients who wore wrist alarms, knew how they worked.
  • Fixed alarms in toilets and bathrooms are now in place.
  • The completion of major environmental works to eliminate shared sleeping arrangements (dormitories), in line with our action plan. All wards at the Bradgate Mental Health Unit (BMHU) are now single occupancy. Patients now have their own bedrooms rather than sleeping in shared accommodation.
  • Patients had sufficient space to store personal belongings. Every patient had access to lockable storage and additional storage space.
  • Staff were aware of the importance to protect patients’ privacy and dignity. Every bedroom door has a permanent sign which reminds staff to knock before entering.

In relation to further improvements identified, Angela adds: “We are committed to creating high quality, compassionate care and wellbeing for all. We have robust plans in place to monitor and embed these new processes for personal alarms, to ensure risk assessments and care plans are completed on the patient’s electronic care record, and to ensure that alarms are regularly tested.

“We are pleased that the CQC have recognised that our ‘Staff treated patients with compassion and kindness. They respected patients’ privacy and dignity’ and that ‘Facilities promoted comfort, dignity and privacy’.

“We are committed to continuing to work in partnership to co-produce improvements with our service users, staff and stakeholders, and are grateful for their ongoing support.”

The report will be published on the CQC website on Thursday 5 May.