Much maligned mental health unit in Goodmayes celebrates good rating after CQC inspection
- Credit: Matt Lund (Nelft)
An adolescent mental health unit that temporarily closed last year immediately following an inspection has been rated good three months after reopening.
The North East London Foundation Trust (Nelft), closed Brookside mental health unit in Barley Lane, Goodmayes, in May following a Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspection.
It then spent more than £750,000 on renovating and restaffing the unit, which reopened in November.
Nelft chief executive John Brouder had described himself as “disappointed” following the CQC’s report last year, but was proud that the Brookside closure had been vindicated.
He said: “Taking the decision to temporarily close the unit was one of the hardest decisions we’ve ever had to make.
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“It became obvious to us that to improve the building and environment we had to temporarily remove the patients to do the extensive work needed to ensure that we have a building fit for future generations.”
Staffing levels across the mental health trust were criticised by the CQC last year, and in answer to that Nelft held a number of recruitment drives in areas across north east London.
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Brookside came in for heavy criticism, and was deemed inadequate in safety, effectiveness, responsiveness and leadership, with inspectors reporting a lack of clear policy for monitoring and searching patients.
Speaking of the improvements that have been made since then, Mr Brouder said: “I’m delighted that the unit is now recognised by the CQC inspectors as providing good care for patients and that they noted that staff morale is now high.
“Temporarily closing the Unit was a difficult choice to make for all concerned, but one that now appears to have been the correct long-term decision.”
As part of the changes at Brookside, Nelft also launched a Young People’s Home Treatment Team (YPHTT) to allow more young people to be treated in a less restrictive manner.
A Nelft spokesman said: “The Trust would like to put on record its thanks to all the staff who worked tirelessly to ensure the improvements were made and Brookside was ready to reopen as soon as possible.”