Care Quality Commission
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CQC publishes ten reports from its review of services for people with learning disabilities

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) today publishes ten reports from a targeted programme of 150 unannounced inspections of hospitals and care homes that care for people with learning disabilities. The first five reports were published in December.

The programme is looking at whether people experience safe and appropriate care, treatment and support and whether they are protected from abuse. A national report into the findings of the programme will be published in the Spring.

The ten inspections were of hospitals that provide assessment and treatment services.

Inspections were focused on two outcomes relating to the government’s essential standards of quality and safety: the care and welfare of people who use services, and safeguarding people who use services from abuse. Of the ten locations inspected:

  • four locations were compliant with both outcomes (although two have been told to make improvements to make sure they continue to comply)
  • two locations had moderate concerns with both outcomes
  • no major concerns were found at any of the locations.

Specifically, in relation to the care and welfare of people who use services, four locations were compliant, one had minor concerns and five had moderate concerns.

In relation to safeguarding, eight locations were compliant and two had moderate concerns.

CQC inspectors were joined by ‘experts by experience’ – people who have first hand experience of care or as a family carer and who can provide the patient or carer perspective as well as professional experts in our learning disability inspections.

Where inspectors identified concerns, they raised these immediately with the providers and managers of services.

All the services where concerns are identified must tell the CQC how and when they will improve. Those failing to meet essential standards could face enforcement action by the regulator if improvements are not made.

The national report will be based on the findings from all the 150 inspections and will make conclusions about the overall state of this type of service.

Notes to editors

For media enquires call the CQC press office on 0207 448 9401

The reports will be published on CQC’s website on Wednesday 11 January on the page:

The reports published today are for the following providers and locations. The table shows our findings in relation to the two outcomes we focussed on, but some reports also show concerns in respect of other outcomes.


Provider name




Partnerships in Care Ltd


1 moderate concern


Tees, Esk and Wear NHS FT

163 Durham Road


North East

South West Yorkshire Partnership NHSFT



Yorkshire & Humberside

Partnerships in Care Ltd

Burston House



Cheshireand Wirral NHSFT


2 moderate concerns

North West

Northamptonshire Health Care NHSFT


1 minor concern

East Midlands

2gether NHSFT

Westridge Assessment and Treatment Service

1 moderate concern

South West

Black CountryPartnership NHS Trust

Heath Lane Service

1 moderate concern

West Midlands

Partnerships in Care Ltd

Hazelwood House

2 moderate concerns

East Midlands

Black CountryPartnership NHS Trust

HallamStreet Hospital


West Midlands


Inspection teams are making unannounced visits to 150 services. More than 100 are NHS and independent services that provide assessment and treatment services for people with learning disabilities.  The others will be adult social care locations.

They are checking two outcomes:

  • Outcome 4 Care and welfare
  • Outcome 7 Safeguarding adults from abuse.

But where our inspectors find problems with other outcomes, they will report on these.

Our inspection teams are led by CQC inspectors joined by two ‘experts by experience’ -  people who have experience of using services, either first hand or as a family carer and who can provide the patient perspective and a professional advisor.

CQC set up an advisory group to help it plan the programme. CQC’s Chair, Dame Jo Williams, chairs the group. The members come from a range of voluntary, charitable and other organisations that work with or represent people with learning disabilities and their families.

The learning disability inspection programme was launched in response to the abuse revealed by undercover filming by the BBC Panorama programme. CQC apologised for failing to respond to warnings of abuse at Winterbourne View. Matters concerning Winterbourne view are the subject of serious case review.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. We make sure that care in hospitals, dental practices, ambulances, care homes, in people’s own homes, and elsewhere, meets government standards of quality and safety -  the standards anyone should expect whenever or wherever they receive care. We also protect the interests of vulnerable people, including those whose rights are restricted under the Mental Health Act.

We register services if they meet government standards, we make unannounced inspections of services, both on a regular basis and in response to concerns, and we carry out investigations into why care fails to improve. We continually monitor information from our inspections, from information we collect nationally and locally, and from the public, local groups, care workers and whistleblowers.  We put the views, experiences, health and wellbeing of people who use services at the centre of our work and we have a range of powers we can use to take action if people are getting poor care.

Further information

There is information on CQC’s web site about how to share concerns and complaints about a social care service, a council, independent healthcare services, the NHS or CQC.

People can telephone concerns to CQC on 03000 616161

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation has provided this list of organisations providing independent support to families with disabled relatives:

Ann Craft Trust

Provides advice to anyone who has a query about the protection of vulnerable children and adults, including professionals, parents, carers and family members.

Tel: 0115 9515400 (Mon-Thurs 9am-5pm, Fri 9am – 4.30pm)


The Challenging Behaviour Foundation

Provides telephone and email support from a Family Support Worker on challenging behaviour associated with severe learning disabilities and related issues.

Tel. 0845 6027885


Free information sheets and DVDs about good support for people who have a learning disability and behaviour described as challenging.

Disability Law Service

Provides telephone or email advice on community care law. Free to disabled people and their family carers.


Tel: 020 77919800


Mencap Learning Disability Helpline

Provides advice and information on all issues relevant to people with learning disabilities and their families in England, Wales & Northern Ireland.

England: Tel: 0808 808 1111 Email:

Northern Ireland: 0808 808 1111 Email:

Wales: 0808 808 1111 Email:

National Autistic Society

If your relative has an Autistic Spectrum Condition you can contact the National Autistic Society which offers advice and information to people on the autism spectrum and their families: Mon-Fri, 10am – 4pm.


Tel: 0808 800 4104



Works with children and adults with learning disabilities who have experienced abuse or trauma, as well as those who have abused others, through psychotherapy,advocacy, campaigning and other support. Respond also runs a free helpline: 0808 808 0700. If you call outside opening hours leave a message and someone will get back to you.


Voice UK

A national charity supporting people with learning disabilities and other vulnerable people who have experienced crime or abuse. They have a helpline for carers, parents and professionals on 080 8802 8686 (Mon-Fri, 9am – 5pm).


Other useful contacts

Samaritans: Confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to those experiencing despair, distress or suicidal feelings.

Tel: 08457 909090


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