Brain injury rehabilitation centre criticised by watchdog

Inspectors have given it one month to improve on staff turnover issues and have also recommended a review on meals.

The Murdostoun Brain Injury Rehabilitation Centre in North Lanarkshire was visited by inspectors from Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS), which highlighted the high levels of staff turnover. The centre, which is registered as an independent hospital, offers intensive rehabilitation for those who have suffered a brain injury. Following the visit last October the centre – which is registered as an independent hospital -  has been given until the end of next month to: “ensure that at all times suitably qualified and competent persons are working in the independent healthcare service in such numbers as are appropriate.” In its report, HIS noted the high turnover among staff, stating:  “This is not ideal in any care setting, but particularly in a rehabilitation setting where staff consistency is of key importance in being able to help clients to practice and review goals.” Most of the nursing staff did not have formal qualifications or experience in rehabilitation, despite issues raised in previpous reports, according to HIS. The report also recommended that meals and snacks be reviewed, saying: “The menu should be nutritionally analysed.” Inspectors found the three-week menu cycle appeared to lack the recommended five fruit or vegetable portions a day and commented that patients were not offered help with washing their hands before meals. People in the centre complained that they were "bored at times" as they felt there was “little to do in the evenings and sometimes during the day as well”, the report revealed. While this had been raised with centre bosses, HIS inspectors “could see little action to make sure clients had staff support for meaningful activities outside of set 'therapy sessions”. Chief Inspector Susan Brimelow said: "This inspection has identified a number of important areas. Ms Brimelow also said inspectors "noted areas where the service was performing well: medication management systems were well organised and storage areas are clean and tidy; and staff recruitment records and staff selection processes were well kept". A spokeswoman for the centre said: "Following its inspection in October last year Healthcare Improvement Scotland rated quality of staffing as good. It also said that medication management is good. The service was rated adequate in respect of having a professional, trained and motivated multi-disciplinary workforce which operates to relevant standards and best practice; for keeping up-to-date comprehensive care records and for ensuring appropriate risk management systems covering the care and treatment being delivered. "No aspect of the service was graded unsatisfactory, but we accept the inspectors' finding that there were some aspects that could be better and we have been implementing a plan agreed with Healthcare Improvement Scotland. Read more of the report and response here. 
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