Trust “improving people’s health and lives” as inspectors give rating of good 

Staff have received an early Christmas present from the NHS' quality regulator which has improved our rating to good overall in their latest report.

Our improved overall rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) follows a number of reports with a ‘requires improvement’ rating. This marks a turning point in the independent assessments of our care quality.

The CQC monitors, inspects and regulates services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety. In its latest report, the CQC said staff treated patients with compassion and kindness and they respected patients’ privacy and dignity – which was backed up by direct feedback from patients themselves. They also said staff involved families and carers and supported their ongoing care and recovery.

A team of CQC inspectors visited the Trust in July and August 2019 to assess seven of its services looking at whether services are safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. They inspected:

  1. acute wards for adults of working age and psychiatric intensive care units,
  2. forensic inpatient/secure wards,
  3. wards for older people with mental health problems,
  4. wards for people with learning disability or autism,
  5. long stay/rehabilitation mental health wards for working age adults,
  6. community-based mental health services for adults of working age, and
  7. community-based mental health services for older people.

Inspectors also looked specifically at our management and leadership to check if it was well-led overall. Our overall ratings have improved from requires improvement to good, following the previous inspection in 2018 (see table below).

Safe Effective Caring Responsive Well-led Overall


Good Good Good Good Good

The full report is available at:

Ratings at a glance – download our full ratings at a glance poster here.

Dr Sara Munro, Chief Executive of Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “This is a great early Christmas present and I’m absolutely thrilled that we’ve finally got the overall rating we deserve.

“This result is down to some amazing team work across the Trust to improve quality of care, patient experience and involvement, and the effectiveness of our practice.

“The CQC’s report says we really are fulfilling our purpose of improving the health and lives of people with mental health problems, learning disabilities and autism. And after all, that’s why we all come to work every day.

“The report has highlighted a number of areas where we need to improve, most notably in the safe domain and the quality of the patient environment.

“A number of the issues flagged by the CQC have either already been addressed, or are being addressed through ongoing work. We look forward to working with our new lead inspector in the coming year on tackling the rest. I know we’ve got an excellent team in place to take this forward and drive us towards being an outstanding Trust.

“I want to thank everyone in the Trust who has contributed to this result – it’s their hard work that has made this possible.”

Julie Meikle, Head of Hospital Inspection at the CQC, said: “There was clearly a positive response to our previous inspection findings, the Trust has worked to address our concerns and is continuing to develop areas that need further improvement. But they have also recognised and learned from the positive progress the services have made.

“We found staff throughout the Trust were providing compassionate and kind care, respecting people’s privacy and dignity. We received feedback from people reflecting this. There was a clear desire to learn and the trust took people’s feedback seriously, so services could progress.

“There are some lingering improvements needing to be made to the safety of some services, but the Trust has made some excellent progress overall and the leadership understands the areas that need attention. We will continue with our programme of inspection and monitor the trust regularly to ensure improvements are made and sustained.”

Key highlights from the report

  • Our acute mental health wards, psychiatric intensive care units and forensic wards were all rated good overall and in all key questions.
  • The wards for people with a learning disability or autism were rated good for caring as patients were able to fully participate in their care and treatment thanks to improved communication techniques.
  • Staff knew and understood the Trust’s values of integrity, simplicity and caring. They were also able to say how the values were used to underpin both individual and team good practice.
  • The CQC found an open and transparent culture where staff felt able to raise concerns without fear of retribution.
  • Staff felt respected, supported and valued and were supported with opportunities for career progression.
  • Inspectors found examples where staff had helped people with a learning disability or autism to gain access to physical healthcare services, supporting them to live healthier lives.
  • Staff across all services worked in effective multi-skilled teams, which supported each other to benefit people’s experience of care. This included aftercare services for people following discharge and staff supported each other so people’s continuity of care was as smooth as possible.
  • Staff also improved on communication methods to help people, and their relatives, understand and manage their own care and treatment, and in support of their recovery. Staff were very knowledgeable on people’s individual needs and supported them to provide their feedback, so services could learn and further improve.
  • The trust’s leadership was committed, had a wide range of skills and experience and was more stable, which enabled the trust to strengthen its governance processes.
  • The trust board recognised areas of success but also understood where improvements were needed.
  • Positive changes were underway to support the provision of high-quality care, such as recruitment and staff retention.
  • Staff engagement was good and leaders visited services regularly to meet staff and talk with patients directly.
  • Inspectors noted that the trust had several innovative clinical services, including a community eating disorders service, an expanded perinatal inpatient unit and a recently launched veterans’ mental health service of which we should rightly be proud.

Areas for improvement

The CQC has stated we must take action on six legal requirements across five services. They are in:

  1. Long stay/rehabilitation wards for adults of working age
  2. Wards for older people with mental health problems
  3. Wards for people with a learning disability or autism
  4. Community based mental health services for adults of working age
  5. Community based mental health services for older people

The CQC has also highlighted 39 things that we should improve to comply with a minor breach that did not justify regulatory action, to prevent breaching a legal requirement, or to improve service quality.