Bradford hospital to become care in community facility

A Bradford hospital that was rated inadequate in a hugely critical report last year will be closed and re-opened as a care in the community facility.

Cygnet Woodside is to re-open as a care in the community facility

The future of Cygnet Woodside was discussed by members of Bradford Council’s Health and Social Care Scrutiny Committee at a meeting on Tuesday.

The hospital, which provides care for male adults with learning disabilities, was visited by the Care Quality Commission last year.

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That unannounced visit led to a highly critical report into the service – which was placed into special measures.

Concerns included that staff were not always wearing face masks, that staff did not all have the right skill levels and a reliance on agency staff.

The decision meant they were unable to take on new patients without the approval of the CQC.

During Tuesday’s online meeting the Committee heard that the facility would be closing as a hospital in the coming months.

Members heard from Beverly Gallagher, Head of Safety and Quality Improvement at the Bradford and Craven CCG and Helen Hart, designated nurse for safeguarding adults at the CCG.

They told the Committee that a CQC inspection of Cygnet Woodside in May 2019 had left the hospital with a “good” rating.

However, this was followed by the inadequate rating less than 18 months later. The CQC had since had “good, honest and frank” discussions with the operator, and agreed to a number of improvement plans.

Work was ongoing to find new placements for the patients currently residing at the hospital.

Chair of the Committee Vanda Greenwood Lab, Windhill and Wrose said: “Between May 2019 and September 2020 were there any significant changes? New provider, new staff, anything at all that changed?”

Mrs Hart said: “Nothing that emerged from any meetings we had.”

Councillor Robert Hargreaves Cons, Queensbury said: “I could spend hours talking about how angry I am they got into this state.

“A change in the type of facility they are providing is sensible, because they seem incapable of running this type of facility.”

Councillor Allun Griffiths Lib Dem, Idle and Thackley said: “If the CQC inspection in 2019 was good and the one in 2020 was inadequate, and nothing much changed in between, it has to raise questions about the CQC inspection that was carried out just a year before.”

Councillor Julie Lintern Lab, Keighley West said: “It’s bleak isn’t it? Just reading it, it is so lax. They are a vulnerable group of people being cared for. It is really basic stuff like wearing face masks. I’m quite angry to be honest.”

She was told the CQC concerns led to “swift” responses.

Councillor Paul Godwin Lab, Keighley West said: “How can you move from being good in May one year and inadequate in September the following year? This isn’t just about Cygnet – if we’re told a place is good what does that mean? Because it might mean nothing, absolutely nothing. We don’t have that reassurance.

“Some of the issues raised here can’t possibly have gone wrong in 18 months, they must have been a problem all along.”

Councillor Julie Humphries Lab, Idle and Thackley said: “This is a difficult report to read.”

After the meeting a spokesperson for Cygnet Woodside said: “Across the UK, there is growing demand for adult social care, with many people with mental health problems or a learning disability living in care settings that do not meet their individual needs. We will be developing the service at Cygnet Woodside into one that enables individuals to receive specialist care in the community as opposed to a hospital setting. This is of course aligned to the Transforming Care agenda, aimed at improving health and care services.

“We are committed to delivering high-quality, person-centred care across the Bradford district, where four of our social care services, Beacon House, Hawkstone, Longfield and Thornfield House are rated Good by the CQC.

“We are using this opportunity to invest heavily in Cygnet Woodside, with a refurbishment programme that will commence in June, so that we can provide a durable service to meet demand.

“Our current priority, however, is the health and wellbeing of the five service users who currently live at Cygnet Woodside, and in partnership with their families, commissioners and the CQC, we are working with them to plan their move to new services best suited to their needs. As the NHS Bradford District and Craven Clinical Commissioning Group has noted, Cygnet Woodside had worked to address the issues raised by the CQC and made significant improvements, and are very grateful for the support we have received from all our stakeholders and particularly the families of our residents.”