…providing integrated community health, mental health and learning disability services

As you know, we welcomed a Trust-wide CQC inspection of our services in November 2016. Although we were rated as ‘requires improvement’ the CQC recognised many improvements since their previous inspection, including in the overall ‘safety’ of our services.

A number of core services will be re-inspected under the new targeted inspection regime between 9 -12 October 2017, and we look forward to showing our continued progress.

The services being inspecting are:

  • Community Mental Health Services for children and young people
  • Community Health Services for adults
  • Acute wards for adults of working age and Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit
  • Community based Mental Health Services for adults of working age
  • Mental health crisis services and Health Based Place of Safety

Highlights of changes and improvements made since our last inspection:-

1. The CQC rated our community child and adolescent mental health service (CAMHS) as inadequate on two domains – safety and responsive. This was primarily related to the number of young people that were waiting for treatment.
We have introduced a new standard operating procedure as part of our extensive improvement strategy. We launched a new CAMHS access model and a CAMHS home crisis and treatment service in April 2017. We also introduced a new all-age place of safety facility in June 2017, following significant investment from our commissioners. Furthermore, we have received an £8m investment from NHS England to create a new purpose-built CAMHS inpatient unit that will, for the first time, be able to offer specialist support for young people with eating disorders. This is fantastic news for our transformation journey and more importantly, for children and young people across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.

2. Improving the safety of adult mental health services
We have made significant improvements in our adult mental health services, through a wide range of initiatives, including over £500,000 spent on buildings work to improve the safety of our environments and the privacy and dignity of our patients. We have worked hard with our partner agencies to improve our acute care pathway and have significantly reduced the number of acute patients sent out of area for inpatient care. We have also expanded our crisis liaison service in Leicester Hospital’s emergency department to cover all ages. In October we open a new six-bedded female psychiatric intensive care unit which will allow local patients to be cared for closer to home. In November 2017 we will be commissioning five ‘moving-on’ beds which will support the timely discharge of people with accommodation needs that can take significant time to resolve. We are embarking on a five-year all-age transformation of mental health and learning disability services, using the learning of Northumberland NHS Trust (which has gone from ‘requires improvement’ to ‘outstanding’).

3. Community health services for adults
We have strengthened the leadership structure in our community health services for adults, expanding community matron posts, and by introducing senior district nurse roles and senior nurses for complex care as part of a wider transformation programme. We have begun to engage with patients and staff about implementing the changes they have identified so far, to improve working experience, patient outcomes, and service efficiency.

4. Other Trust-wide improvements
We have strengthened a number of processes across the Trust. For example, we have implemented additional training for our staff on the Mental Capacity Act and Mental Health Act, supported by local champions and forums. We are developing a trust-wide standard operating procedure for consistency around medicines storage. We have been working through action plans to address waiting lists, using new patient tracking methods, new care planning templates and new risk assessment processes.

Finally, as with other Trusts across the country, our focus on recruitment and retention remains a priority, to ensure we have the right skill mix of staff to provide the best possible care for our patients.

Overall, we remain confident that we are moving in the right direction and look forward to welcoming the CQC’s forthcoming inspections.