Early inspections of community services have revealed concerns about staffing levels, an official from the Care Quality Commission has told a nursing conference.
The findings reinforce ongoing warnings from district nurses that they are under intense pressure, with increasing caseloads, reductions in team skill mix and many experienced staff nearing retirement.
Ellen Armistead, deputy chief inspector of hospitals, last week revealed findings from the first 12 community services inspected under the CQC’s new system of checks, which is currently being rolled out across health and social care organisations in England.
Speaking at the Queen’s Nursing Institute annual conference in London, Ms Armistead noted that compassion among staff appeared to be “alive and well” in community services.
However, she added that, based on the initial trends identified, dementia care needed to be improved and nursing staff levels increased.
She told delegates that the inspections had revealed “wide variation” in staffing levels between community trusts.