AN inspection of a mental health facility that opened near Wellington last year found a high level of assaults were taking place, among other concerns. 

The Care Quality Commission carried out its first quality report of Wellesley Hospital in October and November last year.

The service comprises 60 medium secure beds and 15 low secure beds at West Park in Chelston.

The new hospital allows patients to stay in the area instead of travelling across the country to other hospitals to get the care they need.

The report found a number of concerns including the high level of patient on patient and patient on staff assaults, that patients had little confidence in staff, and medication administration errors. 

The report stated: "Care records were not in line with professional standards for record keeping. Daily records relating to patients general wellbeing, mental health and activity levels were either missing or poorly recorded.

"All five patients we spoke with shared concerns relating to staffs ability to safely diffuse situations. Some patients described times when they have intervened in order to ensure no further harm came to any persons involved.

"Due to Wellesley Hospital being new, there was a mixture of experienced and inexperienced staff. This posed challenges to the hospital with regards to staff being able to confidently respond to incidents."

However, some positive aspects were also recognised. 

The report continued: "All patients we spoke with were positive about the care and treatment they received from medical staff. Patients particularly appreciated the badminton sessions held by one doctor.

"We observed staff interacting with patients in a patient and caring manner, which at times, was good humoured and light-hearted."

Steve Conway, operations director, says that the newly opened hospital recognises the feedback in the report, and says that it is investing in training and recruitment.

He said: "Our hospital opened in January 2017 and is working closely with local area teams to bring patients, many of whom have been out of area for significant periods of time, back into the South West.

"During the first year we have sought to grow the hospital slowly. We are continuing to build and develop our clinical teams so they are in the best position to meet the needs of those in our care.

"We are investing in training, recruitment and the development of the hospital wide team and our aim is to deliver high quality services for local patients.

"We understand the CQC’s findings and have worked hard to address all areas of concern. We also note the positive aspects of hospital life which the CQC highlighted.

"The care and wellbeing of our patients is of the upmost importance to us and we are committed to ensuring that they are at the heart of everything that we do."

The hospital did not receive a rating from the CQC, but will be inspected again and rated in the "near future". 

Click here to read the full report.