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In special measures: Shrewsbury cosmetic surgery used untrained staff and drugs years out of date

By Lucy Todman | Shrewsbury | Health | Published:

Staff at a cosmetic surgery clinic which offers liposuction and cosmetic procedures were found to be untrained and drugs were up to four years out of date when inspectors paid a visit.

Cedar House Clinic which is based on Shrewsbury Business Park, has now been put in to special measures.

Nigel Acheson, Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals from the Care Quality Commission, found that the staff were not suitably qualified, controlled drugs were out of date, some by as much as four years and that during a liposuction procedure, the consultant surgeon was assisted by two untrained members of staff one of whom worked in the administration branch of the clinic.

The consultant surgeon told the inspector the assistant taking the patient's vital signs during a procedure had not had any training to assess if sedation became too deep.

Mr Acheson found that the clinic did not always make sure staff were competent for their roles. Managers did not appraise work performance or hold supervision meetings with staff to provide support and monitor the effectiveness of the service.

During a liposuction procedure the inspector found 'no official accountable items were checked by two people'. Some items were documented on a white board such as blades, needles and swabs but not the total number of swabs.

"We raised this as a concern during the inspection," they added.

The service did not have enough staff with the right qualifications, skills, training and experience to keep people safe from avoidable harm and to provide the right care and treatment nor did it employ any qualified nursing staff or operating department practitioners (OPDs) to support during cosmetic surgical procedures at the time of the inspection.

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Staff at the clinic told the inspector they had not had any patient safety incidents. However, effective processes were not in place to carry out investigations that were clinical.

While the service was found to be failing to be safe, effective or well led it was rated as good for being caring. Staff treated patients with compassion and feedback from patients regarding their care was good. Inspectors said: "Patients told us staff were very calm, explained the procedure and gave them non-surgical options. Patients told us staff were reassuring, they would recommend the practice and they felt very welcome and at ease."

The management of the clinic now has to fulfil a number of requirements within a set period this includes ensuring that all staff are adequately trained for the roles they undertake. It will be reinspected within the next six months.

Cedar House Clinic was approached for comment.

Lucy Todman

By Lucy Todman
@shroptod

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star and Shrewsbury Chronicle based in Shrewsbury.

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