The Care Quality Commission has lifted the final two conditions imposed on West London Mental Health Trust, after it improved staffing levels and the assessment and monitoring of service quality.
Following an increase in trust recruitment efforts, CQC inspectors found its staff vacancy rates fell between April and August and had reached average levels.
The regulator said the trust had also improved its governance structure by creating an operations board, a quality risk committee and finance and performance committee.
The trust had also began using its service user forums to develop and implement patient experience trackers – a tool enabling the trust to identify areas where changes and improvements could be made locally.
In September the regulator lifted another condition imposed on the trust to ensure patients’ detention papers were reviewed regularly to ensure their rights and needs were being met. It said the trust had put in place effective systems to ensure documents were reviewed within set timescales and treatment and care were continually reviewed.
CQC regional director for London Colin Hough praised the trust for coming a “long way in a relatively short period of time” since it was registered in April and it had made a “tremendous effort” to ensure it was fully compliant with the regulator’s essential standards.
He said: “The measures the trust has taken to tighten governing structures and the reporting of untoward incidences will ensure that the services it provides to patients are at acceptable standards.
“Similarly, it was important for the trust to address the issue around staffing levels and that it effectively recruits and makes use of appropriately trained bank staff so that the service can be properly delivered without adversely affecting the performance of other staff members or the level of care that patients receive.”
Trust chief executive Peter Cubbon said: “We’ve come a long way over the last year. Our staff have worked with patients and carers to drive improvements and to meet CQC expectations. Today’s announcement is good news for people using our services and our staff.
“Our priority is to continue to drive up standards so patients receive consistently high quality care in all of our units and in the community. We’re committed to providing excellent care, and the CQC have confirmed that we’re moving in the right direction.”
The trust has also been investigated separately by the CQC regarding concerns raised last year about its response to suicides and other serious incidents. It highlighted delays in investigating incidents and a failure to learn from common themes identified and documented in action plans.
The regulator concluded in July that the trust had made significant improvements in risk management to protect patient safety.