Melton brain injury hospital rated 'inadequate'

A Melton hospital which has failed every inspection since it opened its doors 10 years ago has been rated ‘inadequate’ in its latest quality report.
Burton Park Hospital, based in Warwick Road, MeltonIMAGE: Google StreetViewBurton Park Hospital, based in Warwick Road, MeltonIMAGE: Google StreetView
Burton Park Hospital, based in Warwick Road, MeltonIMAGE: Google StreetView

Burton Park Hospital, based on Warwick Road, predominantly provides care and treatment for patients with ‘acquired or traumatic brain injuries’, including strokes.

Inspectors with healthcare watchdog, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), gave it the lowest possible grade after finding a catalogue of problems in their latest visit, in November last year.

Priory Healthcare, which runs the hospital, said it accepted the findings of the CQC – which have just been published – and had ‘acted quickly’ to address concerns.

Inspectors said the hospital was found to have had repeated breaches of the Health and Social Care Act since it was registered with the CQC in 2014 – being rated either ‘requires improvement’ or ‘inadequate’ in every inspection.

Their report highlighted several issues with the treatment of individual patients and raised concerns over medicine management and administration.

Staffing issues were highlighted with temporary staff needed to cover thousands of shifts and the hospital being unable to get cover for a further 317.

The hospital blamed the use of agency staff on recruitment difficulties in the local area – it said it had recruited more permanent staff since the inspection.

The service also did not have on its team a social worker, a psychologist or a dietitian, the CQC report stated. Staff said they had been without a psychologist for either a year or two years. Four patients needed psychological support and were not receiving it.

The hospital ‘did not have enough substantive nursing and support staff to keep patients safe’, inspectors found. The reliance on temporary staff ‘increased the risk of people receiving inconsistent care as agency staff were not always familiar with patient’s care plans or routines’, they added.

Some patients had been at the hospital for ‘many years’, the report added, with nine years being the longest stay at the time of the inspection.

The CQC said it could not be ‘confident that all patients did not stay at the hospital no longer than they needed’.

A spokesperson for the hospital said: “Although improvements were underway before the CQC visit, we accepted the findings in this report and have acted quickly to address concerns, including around medicines management.

“This is a particularly difficult geographical area to recruit in, made more challenging by the national shortage of healthcare staff, and at the time of the inspection in November last year, we had recently begun working with a new agency who were less familiar with some of our processes.

“Since then we have recruited more permanent colleagues who will all receive the equivalent of the Real Living Wage from April 1, 2024, and ensured our agency staff receive the appropriate induction and training.

“We are pleased that the CQC inspectors acknowledged our staff were ‘highly motivated and compassionate people’ who involved patients and families in care decisions, and will continue to focus on providing care that reflects the needs of the individuals we support.”

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