CQC logoThe Chief Inspector of Hospitals has published his first report using new trustwide methodolgy on the quality of care provided by Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust following an inspection in May.

Overall, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) found that the trust was well led, that staff were caring and compassionate, and identified some good and innovative practice, however there were a few areas where improvements were needed that could have an impact on the safety and effectiveness of the services being provided to people.

Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust was one of the first specialist providers of mental health services to be inspected under CQC's new approach to inspections.

Improve standards of care
Commenting on the inspection, CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals Sir Mike Richards said: "Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust provides vital services to a large number of people in Camden and Islington, which makes it very important that these services are delivered well. We saw that the trust genuinely wanted to put the people who used their services at the centre of their work.

"We found that, while staff were delivering compassionate care and there was innovative practice in some areas, there were some areas of the trust which could present a risk to people using its services. These issues need to be fixed quickly to ensure that people are safe.

"This inspection took place as part of our pilot programme designed to fully test our new methodology, and the trust will receive a rating when we next visit. When we return, we hope to see that the good practice that we have seen has been sustained, and that where we have identified that improvements are needed, these are made quickly. We will be working with the trust to agree an action plan to help improve the standards of care and treatment it provides."

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His inspection team included CQC inspectors and analysts, doctors, nurses, social workers, Mental Health Act commissioners, psychologists, patient experts by experience, other specialists and senior managers.

In particular, some staff working in inpatient services were not confident in using the Mental Capacity Act 1983 and the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS). This led to a risk that people might not be properly involved in decisions about their care. Inspectors were also concerned about the risk of falls for older people, and lessons learned from incidents were not always shared effectively with staff working in wards or teams.

The senior management team at the trust were aware of the improvements that were needed, and were in the progress of addressing them at the time of the inspection. Inspectors saw that people using the services were treated with dignity and respect, and the majority of people spoken to said staff were kind.

The full reports on the trust and on each core service can be found here: http://www.cqc.org.uk/provider/TAF.