Inspectors praise “kind and compassionate care” at Priory’s Burston House

Date: 30th January 2024

  • Inspectors spoke of “kind and caring staff” at Burston House, who were “attentive to people’s emotional and other support needs”
  • Staff encouraged people to explore their interests and try new activities and experiences, like swimming and fishing
  • People’s physical health was also supported, with regular visits from dietitians and physical health nurses
  • The service, which retained its ‘good’ rating across the board, fully involved people and their families in their care

Priory’s Burston House in Diss, Norfolk, has been praised for delivering “kind and compassionate care,” following a recent Care Quality Commission (CQC) review.

The service provides specialist treatment for adults with a learning disability and other associated conditions, including personality disorders, mental illnesses and autism. It has retained a ‘good’ rating across the board from the regulator, and is commended for providing “good care, support and treatment.”

Inspectors said that staff are “attentive to people’s emotional and other support needs” and show a “genuine interest” in people’s wellbeing and quality of life. This is in evidence by the array of activities on offer at Burston House, with people being encouraged “to try new experiences, develop new skills and gain independence.” The regulator notes that people are supported to enjoy activities like swimming or fishing, or to play pool, and that activities are tailored to individuals as part of their wider care plans.

The review also complimented staff for supporting people’s physical health and “encouraging them to live healthier lives”, including visits from a physical health nurse and dietitian, who delivered informative sessions on healthy eating and diabetes management.

Inspectors also praise access to psychological therapies and self-care support.

Staff are considered well-trained in caring for autistic people and people with a learning disability, and are praised for taking part in monthly reflective sessions facilitated by the psychology team to discuss potential improvements. Staff expertise is demonstrable in people’s care plans, which lay out “clear pathways to future goals and aspirations” and involve input from people receiving care and their families and carers.

Priory Burston House “fully involved people in feeding back about care,” says the CQC, which commends the service for inviting people to attend community meetings and a patient council.

“People were listened to, given time, and were supported by staff to express their views using their preferred method of communication,” say inspectors, who added that staff allocate one-to-one time for people to talk about their care and treatment.

The service provides care across two specialist wards, Kestral Ward, a low secure male unit, and Rectory House, an 8-bedded community rehabilitation ward. It's part of a care pathway in Norfolk and Suffolk, which provides a step down for patients who are further along their recovery journey and closer to discharge into the community.

CQC rated Priory Burston House as 'good' in all five categories, for being ‘safe’, ‘caring’, ‘effective’, ‘responsive to people’s needs’ and ‘well-led’. The service is rated as ‘good’ overall.

Priory is the UK’s leading independent provider of mental health and adult social care services.

Hospital Director, Sharon Drake, said: “Our staff work very hard to ensure people’s individual needs are met, and we will continue to support each other so that we can deliver the very best service. I’m so pleased to know that inspectors can see the positive impact colleagues at Burston House are having on the people we support.”

Rebekah Cresswell, Priory Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said: “I’m very proud of the team at Burston House. This report reflects not only their kind and compassionate nature, but their expertise in supporting people on the journey to living more independently. I can’t thank them enough for their hard work.”



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[ii] Curb Health is an interactive app to support people to avoid high-risk health behaviour and is offering free access for ‘Dry January’.


About Priory and MEDIAN

Priory is the UK’s leading independent provider of mental health services. We treat more than 70 conditions including depression, anxiety, addictions, and eating disorders, as well as children’s mental health, across our nationwide network of sites. We also support autistic adults and adults with a learning disability, Prader-Willi syndrome and brain injuries, as well as older people, within our specialist residential care and supported living facilities – helping as many people as possible to live their lives.

Priory is part of the MEDIAN Group, one of Europe’s leading providers of high quality mental health and rehabilitation services. The MEDIAN Group comprises: 290 facilities with 5,000 beds caring for 28,000 people in the UK, 120 facilities with 20,000 beds caring for around 250,000 patients in Germany, and 15 facilities with 2,000 beds caring for 13,000 people in Spain, with more than 29,000 employees overall.

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