PERFORMANCE: The Care Quality Commission said the trust passed both of the standards relating to dignity and nutrition during a spot check as part of a wider investigation into how older patients are treated.

The regulator checked two “essential standards” of care during an inspection of two wards – the Michael Bates Ward, which specialises in elderly care, and surgical ward S1– at the trust’s North Middlesex University Hospital.

Inspectors – including a practising nurse – observed how people were being cared for, talked with patients, talked with staff, and checked records.

The standards assessed were:

  • People should be treated with respect, involved in discussions about their care and treatment and able to influence how the service is run
  • Food and drink should meet people’s individual dietary needs

It concluded that overall the North Middlesex University Hospital was meeting both essential standards.

In its report, the regulator said: “Patients were enabled to participate in decisions about their care and treatment and decisions made by patients were respected. Appropriate information was provided to patients and their relatives or carers.

“Overall, patients were treated with consideration and respect, independence was encouraged and their privacy was protected.”

It added: “The trust had processes in place to identify and monitor people who were at risk of poor nutrition and hydration and these were generally being implemented consistently. Protected meal times were in place and patients were given assistance to eat and drink where appropriate.

“Nutritional assessments of patients were completed and food and fluid intake usually monitored where risks were identified. As a result patients were being protected from the risks inadequate nutrition and dehydration.”

The regulator visited 100 hospitals as part of its programme of inspections on older patients’ treatment and is currently publishing them in batches, of which this is the fourth.