A HEALTH trust that provides community care and mental health services has been rated as ‘requires improvement’ by government inspectors.
Solent NHS Trust, which covers Portsmouth, was inspected by the Care Quality Commission.
We are working to ensure the areas identified as requiring improvement are being addressed.Sue Harriman
The report published today shows the trust was rated as ‘inadequate’ in three areas of safety, including its services for children, young people and families.
Professor Mike Richards, chief inspector of hospitals at the CQC, said: ‘We found that staff did not always follow policies and procedures to safely manage medicines.
‘There were some staffing vacancies which impacted on service delivery.
‘Staff did not always assess and manage risks to patients and patients were not always involved in making decisions about their care.’
Solent did have several areas of good practice and its community mental health services for people with a learning disability or autism was rated as outstanding.
It was commended in helping to ease pressure on Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham, Portsmouth.
Prof Richards added: ‘I am pleased that in an effort to bring care closer to people’s homes the trust has been working well with other agencies to reduce hospital admissions and promote integrated care in the community.’
The CQC looked at community services and mental health services seeing if they were safe, effective, responsive, well-led and caring.
Overall, Solent was rated ‘good’ for being caring and responsive and ‘requires improvement’ for the others.
Across its services, which include substance misuse, end-of-life care, sexual health and long-stay mental health wards, staff were found to be compassionate. Chief executive of Solent Sue Harriman said: ‘We are thankful to the CQC for conducting a thorough and robust inspection, which will help us to continue on our learning journey. I am delighted the majority of our services were found to be meeting the expected standards.
‘Naturally, we are disappointed with the overall rating but recognise that we need to do more. We are working to ensure the areas identified as requiring improvement are being addressed.
‘Following, and during the inspection, we immediately put remedial measures in place and have drawn up further action plans to ensure we address all the areas of concern.’