A RESIDENTIAL home specialising in mental health care has been given a second damning verdict following a surprise inspection.

The Croft at New Kyo, near Stanley, was deemed ‘inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission, in March following an unannounced visit in December.

Inspectors returned in May and found standards at the facility were still unacceptable.

Ratings in four areas out of five, including whether the service is: safe, effective, responsive or well led, were all judged to be ‘inadequate’.

In the ‘caring’ category inspectors said it ‘required improvement’.

Overall, the service is ‘inadequate’, despite being place in special measures earlier in the year.

The report said: “The service was placed in ‘special measures’.

“This is where services are kept under review by the CQC and if immediate action has not been taken to propose to cancel the provider’s registration of the service, the location will be inspected again within six months.

“The expectation is that providers found to have been providing inadequate care should have made significant improvements within this timeframe.”

The Croft cares for 25 people who suffers from a range of conditions, including personality disorders, schizophrenia, depression, bi-polar and learning disabilities.

Inspectors found discrepancies between the number of some of the medicines in the home and the records and were not sure people had received their medication in the way in which they were prescribed.

The service failed to identify and record risks people posed to themselves and others, or support staff on how to reduce risks.

Records also revealed references had not been obtained for two staff before they had started to work in the service, which meant recruitment checks were incomplete.

The report said as a result of the home requiring refurbishment, there were shortfalls in cleanliness and staff were not sufficiently trained to look after residents.

Potens, which runs the facility, has previously said it is working with Durham County Council to improve the service.

The report said: “This service remains in special measures due to an overall rating of inadequate at this inspection.

“For adult social care services the maximum time for being in special measures will usually be no more than 12 months.

“This service will continue to be kept under review and, if needed, could be escalated to urgent enforcement action.”