Devon Partnership NHS Trust rated as Good

England’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals has rated the services provided by Devon Partnership NHS Trust as Good following a focused inspection by the Care Quality Commission in December 2016.

Devon Partnership NHS Trust is the county’s main provider of mental health services. The CQC inspected five core services, including community mental health services for older people, wards for older people, acute wards for adults of working age, wards for people with learning disabilities or autism, crisis care and home based treatment.

Inspectors found considerable improvements had been made since the last inspection in July 2015. The trust has now been rated Good for providing  safe and effective services. It had already been rated Good for providing caring, well-led and responsive services.

Full reports are available on CQC’s website at:

CQC’s Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals (and lead for mental health), Dr Paul Lelliott, said:

“When we visited in December 2016, we found that Devon Partnership NHS Trust has made significant improvements to meet the requirements we had made when we last inspected.

“We saw many areas of good practice. In particular – the trust leadership actively participated in the Zero Suicide collaborative programme to promote better mental health; people felt their well-being had improved as a result of the services they had received.

“It was good to see that a new out of hours phone line  allowed people to access crisis support during the night. We found that crisis services were supportive and helped people manage their care plans and recognise when they may be at risk of becoming unwell in the future.

“We also saw that incidents were investigated in detail and action plans were developed. The quality improvement academy worked with individuals and teams to promote good quality care and the learning from experience group shared lessons learned from incidents.

“There were still some areas for improvement. The trust has told us they have listened to our inspectors’ findings and we are confident that the staff will work to deliver these improvements for their patients. We will return in due course to check on their progress.”

The reports highlight several areas of good practice, including:

  • The trust actively participated in the Zero Suicide collaborative programme in the South West to promote better mental health.
  • The trust worked on an innovative programme which aimed to reduce the frequency of violent incidents on psychiatric wards by 25% within two years.
  • Staff were provided with a guide to which was in use across the wards.. The succinct guide, produced by the trust, contains a variety of topics and checklists which support staff to provide good quality care.
  • The trust identified and monitored beds in cases of special urgency and worked with clinical commission groups to ensure that they were aware when the trust’s bed capacity was reaching full capacity.

 Inspectors found that the trust should improve in some areas, including: 

  • The trust must identify and mitigate the potential risk caused by blind spots and ligature points. 
  • The provider should  increase staff numbers in the older people’s inpatient services, Meadow View in North Devon and Belvedere, the dementia unit.

The provider should improve patient access to psychological therapies.