MENTAL health services in Wiltshire have come under fire after health bosses from the Care Quality Commission graded the Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership (AWP) NHS Trust as ‘requires improvement’.

Inspectors found that staff were not “effectively monitoring” equipment at Green Lane Hospital in Devizes, which is one of the trust’s places of safety, while some patients were facing a 32 to 50-hour wait to be admitted to hospital.

The trust was also told to address a damp problem in Green Lane Hospital’s kitchen and work to remove ligature risks to patients in the report, which was published on October 3.

The unit is one of four across the county where people experiencing a mental health crisis can be taken for assessment by health professionals.

Under plans currently being considered by AWP, three of these suites could be shut and the remainder of services moved to Green Lane.

The watchdog defended its decision to grade the trust as requires improvement again after the trust failed to make significant improvements from its June inspection.

Overall, the report highlights that seven out of 13 core services requires improvement and that there were no clear plans to mitigate ligature risks.

There was, however, a reduction in the number of people being detained for longer than the maximum time of 72 hours and staff were praised for being caring and compassionate.

A spokesman from AWP said: “Overall we feel that the CQC gave us a positive report that acknowledges the work we have completed in the last 12 months.

“The CQC acknowledged that most issues from the 2016 inspection have been addressed and they have lifted the Section 29 Warning Notice relating to places of safety (PoS).

“We acknowledge there is further work to do and we are grateful to our staff for their continued dedication and compassion in delivering services.

“Some refurbishment of the PoS space at Green Lane has already taken place.

“Should the decision be made to locate our PoS services there, the remaining issues noted by the CQC will be addressed at that time.

“The ‘ligature risk’ mentioned in the report referred to an area which was locked and out of use, and not accessible by either staff or service users.”