Explaining why services at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) were unsafe, the most recent inspection report by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) noted (page 8):
“There remained a shortage of beds across the trust and that this had impaired patient safety and treatment at times. Staff worked with other services in the trust to make arrangements to transfer or discharge patients. However, a lack of available beds meant that people may have been moved, discharged early or managed within an inappropriate service.”
The consultants paid £58,000 by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT) and the Norfolk clinical commissioning bureaucrats claimed:
“The current number of inpatient beds could be sufficient, if issues of clinical variance (primary and secondary care) are addressed, and if some adjustments are made to the pattern of alternatives to admission. We would certainly be pursuing these opportunities, and observing their effect, prior to any additional investment in general admission beds.”
The consultants paid £58,000 by NSFT and the Norfolk clinical commissioning bureaucrats also worked on the basis that:
“A bed for the “wrong” age group will always be used in preference to overspill.”
Which sounds suspiciously similar to “managed in an inappropriate service.”
Sir Humphrey Appleby, GCB, KBE, MVO, MA would have called ignoring the regulator ‘brave’.
The Care Quality Commission is currently inspecting mental health services at NSFT.