The Whorlton Hall disclosures

My blog is developing a bus theme which would delight a certain cheeky chappy we miss off the planet and to the moon and back. I wrote a CQC related post about the shoddiness of Mencrap provision yesterday evening after a longish gap and then, 24 hours later, comes another CQC related post.

After Panorama exposed brutal and cruel treatment at Whorlton Hall recently, the CQC today published the series of edited reports that begin when Barry Stanley-Wilkinson, a CQC inspector, wrote a report about the provision after an inspection in 2015. He found Whorlton Hall required improvement on all domains inspected. The report was not published until today.

We welcome the disclosure today in the rarely seen spirit of transparency. It offers an insight into an inspection process that should probably be chucked into the nearest skip. Coincidentally there was “a large skip within the hospital car park, which contained debris as well as long planks of wood which had large nails attached” when Barry and team visited.

So today we can trace how a CQC inspector writes a report which goes through layers of review. At each stage meaning is stripped back to bordering on the meaningless, words substituted for more vacuous ones (selected by a ‘word coach’ using a quasi scientific tool). The report then, apparently stripped of the layers of editing (audit trail) bounces to a final review stage which, in the case of this particular report, led to it being punted into the, er, nearest skip.

More evidence was needed apparently though it is not clear where that decision came from in the documents released today. Six months [six months] later, nearly 12 months [12 months…] after Barry’s inspection, Whorlton Hall mysteriously received a good inspection rating. And that was history until the Panorama team went in this year.

So what did Barry’s original report highlight?

  • Environmental risks including the skip and parts of the building in which people couldn’t be observed.
  • Incomplete record keeping (including observations) and lack of risk assessment review.
  • Poor quality reporting of multi disciplinary team meetings.
  • Recordings not legible and no treatment or discharge plans formulated.
  • Out of date medication policies and no rapid tranquillisation policy
  • Lack of plans around sexuality and sexual behaviour and poor take up of annual health checks.
  • Inappropriate staffing levels and poorly trained staff who lacked understanding of the Mental Capacity Act and ways of communicating with people.
  • A low stimulus room used without protocols or procedures.

Basically a cornucopia of potential and chilling human rights abuses which were allowed to flourish for another 4 years. Between the CQC, NHS England, Hancock, ineffectual and careless commissioners, limp processes like Leder and self serving and greedy charities like Mencrap, it really ain’t hard to work out what underpins the stark and devastating disparities in the life outcomes of learning disabled people.

I seriously hope the Human Rights Committee are all over this on Wednesday afternoon.

In case readers need reminding of what living lives we all have a right to live look like, here are Dawn, Gina and Jess enjoying a beer after walking 100kms of the Camino de Santiago last March.



2 thoughts on “The Whorlton Hall disclosures

  1. Pingback: Beasts, bombs and brilliance | mydaftlife

  2. Sara

    Thank you once again for an excellent blog.

    It exposes the disgraceful failings of a Statutory group with both the power and responsibility to protect our sons and daughters from abuse and neglect.

    Perhaps it would be more effective and useful if it also felt accountable for doing the same.

    I watched a discussion this morning where a mother talked of her 30 years of battling to ensure justice for a daughter who was brutally murdered all those years ago.

    She said ‘thirty years ago my life changed forever’.

    All of us – parents – who have no other choice but trust and hope in the vagaries of care organisations when our disabled child goes into their pretty shaky arms ..know what these words mean and how they feel..

    We live a life of fearful anticipation..and… of . ‘ pray god…what next ‘ ?
    And we learn immediately that care means constant risk rather than respite – ..and our lives are established on a new path..a totally different path…every day.

    And when our child of whatever age, suffers rather than thrives, fear ligatures tighten and change our too fearful to sleep easily again, lives.

    We are different people every day..and.our life path changes every day..

    Seen from the other side of the people who see us through cloudy Statutory blinkers – we are, and always will be, strangers.

    When our child is hurt or damaged on an allocated path – we
    – mum and dad – die. And we die again every day – when pushed and dragged down.the so called ‘Justice ‘, road.

    The suffering of the glorious mother on TV this morning, said it all – for us all.

    CQC – stop fannying about with the truth. Get a grip. Be accountable.

    Be useful..- give us and our lives. .back.

    More negligence means more ‘other’s’ children will just exist on a slippery care cliff edge – more.will be broken …and too many more will be lost,


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