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A local brain injury service is rated ‘outstanding’ for safety

  • A patient’s relative told inspectors the service is “friendly, caring and happy”
  • Inspectors praised the service for “demonstrating a commitment to providing high quality support”

A brain injury service, the Elton Unit of Priory’s Highbank Centre, has been rated ‘outstanding’ for safety.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) gave the service – which also cares for those with other types of complex head injuries, as well as behavioural needs – top marks for its safety regime. The CQC inspects and regulates health and social care in England.

In their review of the “are the services safe” category, the CQC said: “A relative commented, ‘All the staff are approachable, care staff, domestic staff, kitchen staff, maintenance staff and management. Overall it is a friendly, caring and happy unit, from our perspective. It appears to be well staffed at all times so the care can be given without compromise.’”

A relative told inspectors, “We feel fortunate that our relative has found a place where we do not worry about care needs not being met to the full.”

The service was rated ‘good’ in all other categories “are the services effective”, “caring”, “responsive” and “well led”.

In their review of the “caring” category the inspectors said, “The atmosphere was calm, friendly and relaxed and people appeared well looked after… A relative commented, ‘The residents are all treated as individuals, without exception, and the unit is well managed both locally and from Highbank’”. Another relative commented, “Whenever we visit we always witness a caring, responsive and proactive well-run unit.”

The CQC went on to say, “All the staff we spoke to demonstrated a commitment to providing high quality support and care to help people who used the service to meet their treatment goal.”

The report is full of praise for the service in the other categories. The inspectors commented that a “key strength of the service is providing people with significant nursing support needs to participant in activities”. The report explains how the Elton Unit supported patients with special activities for the World Cup and the Royal Wedding. A special projector was recently installed so that a patient could watch football. Patients can provide feedback about the service in Tea and Chat sessions. 

The Elton Unit of the Priory Highbank Centre treats people with complex neurological injury and behavioural needs. It is located five miles away from the Priory Highbank Centre’s main site. The Priory Highbank Centre is owned by The Priory Group, which specialises in mental healthcare and runs mental health hospitals across the UK.

Sarah Rushton, Registered Manager, said: “I am really proud of what the Elton Unit is achieving. It is a privilege to be rated ‘outstanding’ in the “safe” category. The CQC were also full of praise for the service in other parts of the report, particularly in the “caring” category. I thank our patients, their relatives and everyone who works at the Elton Unit for achieving so much.”

Gair Stott, Managing Director for the North region at Priory Healthcare, said: “I want to take this opportunity to thank Sarah and her team for all the brilliant work they do at the Elton Unit. What stood out for me was how much positive feedback patients’ relatives gave about the service, and how highly they regard the staff team there.”


Notes to editors

For interviews or inquiries, please contact Philip Nicholls on 0207 605 4332 or email

About Priory Group

The Priory Group is the leading provider of behavioural care in the UK, caring for around 30,000 people a year for conditions including depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol addiction, eating disorders and self-harming. The Group is organised into three divisions – healthcare, education and children’s services, and adult care. The Priory Group is owned by NASDAQ-listed Acadia Healthcare, which is recognised as a global leader in behavioural health.

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