08 August 2016
Safety Concerns for Priory Patients Following Critical Report
A high-profile rehabilitation clinic for people with mental health issues has been classed as ‘unsafe’ by the Care Quality Commission.
The Priory hospital in Roehampton, south-west London, ‘requires improvement’ in four out of five key areas assessed by the CQC, according to the care watchdog’s latest report.
Among the issues highlighted was the layout which meant staff found it hard to observe patients at risk of self-harming and there were also “ligature risks” throughout the hospital.
The Priory charges patients £6,800 per week before treatments, according to The Times.
But the report found a “high level of risk to patients’ safety” including very high turnover of staff and too much reliance on temporary staff, which affected consistency of care.
The Priory was criticised by the CQC in December following the death of patient Stephen Bantoft, 49.
An inquest into his death is due to be held later this year.
Mr Bantoft’s tragic death is one of two suicides reported at the Roehampton hospital in the last year, and one of ten ‘serious incidents of self-harm’ involving ligatures in the three months prior to March.
The report said: “The layout of the hospital and the wards made it very hard for staff to observe patients who were at risk of self-harm. There were ligature risks throughout the hospital. There were a high number of incidents in the last year involving ligatures.”
Other areas listed as requiring improvement included insufficient facilities for physical examinations and significant numbers of staff with low morale, who felt their concerns were not being listened to.
The report added: “Whilst the provider was taking steps to improve the safety of the physical environment there remained a high level of risk to patients’ safety. Many of the patients were assessed as being at risk of self-harm and the hospital may not be able to meet their needs safely.”
A Priory Hospital spokesperson told The Times: “We take this report extremely seriously, and are already delivering a significant programme of investment to improve the physical environment, alongside a further £500,000 to address the concerns raised by the CQC.”
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