PERFORMANCE: Surrey and Borders Partnership Trust has been given three warning notices by the Care Quality Commission after inspectors found it had “failed to protect the welfare of patients” on one of its dementia wards.

The inspection team re-visited the Willow Ward at Woking Community Hospital in January to see if improvements had been made since the last inspection in August, when it was found staff failed to protect “peoples’ right to privacy and dignity”.

They found that several concerns flagged by the CQC last year had not been addressed. This included a missing shower curtain that inspectors had pointed out five months previously.

Inspectors found that people using the service were not treated with “consideration or respect”. They saw staff chatting to each other rather than with the patients when they were helping them to eat.

There was also a lack of activities for patients. Several were left to sit in front of the television without being asked if they would prefer to do something else and one patient was left to constantly walk around the ward without any interaction with staff.

Paul Lelliott, CQC deputy chief inspector and its lead for mental health, said that despite “assurances” from the trust that an action plan would be put in place “our return visit in January showed that care at Willow Ward was still not of a good enough standard”. 

The trust’s director of quality Jo Young said: “We have apologised to the people who use our services on Willow Ward and their families for failing to fully complete the actions to the timescales we set ourselves to improve their experience on the ward.

“I am now satisfied that we have completed these actions and am confident we provide a caring and respectful environment for people reaching the end of their life who require total support with all of their daily activities of living.”