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CQC warning over safety and cleanliness.

A Leeds care home with ‘visibly dirty’ wards has been issued with a formal warning by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) that it must make urgent improvement to its standards of care.

Waterloo Manor Independent Hospital, Garforth, Leeds, has been issued with the warning after an inspection in February as part of CQC’s scheduled programme.

The hospital provides low secure and rehabilitation services for women with mental health needs and was inspected for four-days by a team of  CQC inspectors, a Mental Health Act specialist, a consultant psychiatrist, two nurses and an ‘expert by experience’.

After the inspection, CQC issued four warning notices requiring Waterloo Manor Limited to protect the health, safety and welfare of its patients. The hospital was given an overall rating of Inadequate.

Inspectors identified serious concerns regarding the safety and cleanliness of the hospital. Wards were visibly dirty and poorly maintained and the layout of some meant that areas used by patients were not always visible to staff.

Inspectors also found potential risks from fixtures with which patients could harm themselves and management had no clear plans to address this.

Between the 7 January 2014 and 2 January 2015 there had been 56 serious untoward incidents. Eight related to self harm and 24 were patient-on-patient abuse.

The report adds that there were not always enough members of staff to care for people safely and staff were not supported by appropriate training and supervision. Inspectors raised concerns that this was affecting their ability to provide high-quality care.

Head of Hospital Inspection (Mental Health), Jenny Wilkes, said: “We told Waterloo Manor Limited to take action to protect the health, safety and welfare of those in their care.

“Some patients told inspectors that they were not well cared for and that they had experienced bullying by staff and other patients.

“High staff vacancies, inadequate care planning and the failure to address safety risks posed by ligature points and broken furniture all need attention. The number of incidents of patient-on-patient abuse was disturbing – yet we found little evidence that the provider had a system to learn from these or prevent them.”