Lewisham’s adult mental health services at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust have made “significant improvements” since an inspection found its psychiatric and intensive care units (PICU) for adults were inadequate.

The CQC inspection rated the trust good overall, but found inpatients or people supported by adult community mental health teams were not consistently getting high standards of care.

A warning notice was issued across the trusts’ twenty acute and PICU wards.

It also found the community based mental health services for adults of working age required improvement.

This was partly down to a lack of beds which meant people in need of a mental health assessment were not assessed.

But staff had worked hard to improve the services, Lewisham Council’s healthier communities select committee heard from the trust’s director of nursing, Beverley Murphy.

She said: “The detail of the warning notice related to the variance in quality happening across the wards.

“There was also the lack of monitoring, oversight and attention to bringing about change.

“Since that time we have worked hard.

“We have seen significant improvements in Lewisham,” she added.

The report explained the trust had a substantial problem with staff recruitment and retention, which impacted on quality of care.

The trust needed to make improvements across most of its services in the documentation of risk for individual patients. This is to ensure the information was readily available, accurate and being followed.

Concerns were also raised around the use of restraint and seclusion.

“The trust must ensure that staff use restraint only as a last resort, that they minimise the use of restraint in the prone position, that they accurately document and record the use of restrictive interventions,” according to the report.

South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust covers Bromley, Bexley, Croydon, Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham, Southwark and Wandsworth.