latest health care news

21.04.17

Lancashire FT told to urgently improve by the CQC

A Lancashire foundation trust has been told to urgently improve its services after the CQC concluded the quality of care at its hospitals was not up to scratch.

The regulator has sent the message to the Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS FT after it rated it as ‘requires improvement’ following an inspection of the Royal Preston Hospital and Chorley and South Ribble Hospital in September 2016.

Back in June 2015, Monitor, which became a part of NHS Improvement in April 2016, hit the trust with regulatory action after it was found to be in breach of its license to provide care, and had to intervene to address problems with the its way finances were run.

One of the hospitals in the trust, Royal Preston Hospital, also made headlines in February after a radiologist at the hospital was found guilty of defrauding the NHS of £24,000.

Chief inspector of hospitals at the CQC, Professor Sir Mike Richards, said that it was disappointing that the FT had not improved care after his organisation’s previous inspection in July 2014, which had already found significant problems surrounding patient flow and pressure within the A&E departments.

“Once again we found that patients were waiting too long in A&E, and a high number were placed in areas that weren’t the most appropriate for their needs due to capacity issues,” Sir Mike explained.

“Additionally, the problems with capacity and patient flow through the hospital led to the cancellation of planned operations due to bed shortages, patients unnecessarily being moved wards during their stay, and the use of areas such as theatre recovery to house patients instead of wards, at times of high pressure.”

There were also concerns with staffing levels at the trust, particularly within maternity, children’s and neonatal services, the chief inspector added.

“There are also significant challenges with medical staffing at the trust, although there are plans in place to improve recruitment in this area,” he continued.

“The trust is working against a backdrop of pressure on all of its services and I am anxious to see them continue to monitor and improve staffing levels, patients flow and patient discharge.”

Sir Mike added that the trust board were aware of the problems and the hospitals would continue to be monitored and assessed for improvement.

Leaders at the trust explained that they full accepted the CQC’s findings and that work was already underway to improve when inspectors visited in September last year.

Karen Partlington, its chief executive, said: “We are pleased that the CQC recognised that our staff are hardworking, caring, and treat patients with kindness and compassion.  

“Inspectors also noted our open and transparent culture, and willingness to learn lessons and continuously improve. So we have the right values, expertise and commitment to move forward, and provide the outstanding care our patients deserve.”

The CEO added that the CQC was right to highlight the pressure that the trust was under, which is limiting the ability of staff to provide planned operations on time and hit A&E waiting time targets.

“We are working with our partners on a number of initiatives to prevent unnecessary hospital attendance and admission and to ensure enough of the right support is in place so that people can be discharged from hospital promptly and safely when they no longer need our specialist care,” argued Partlington.

Her colleague Sue Musson, chair of the trust, added: “Recent years have been exceptionally challenging for the NHS, and for our hospitals in particular.

“Demand has increased significantly, and funding has reduced. I am confident that the board has got a good grip of what needs to be done, and a robust and comprehensive plan to make the necessary improvements.”

The news at the Lancashire FT follows a dire week for a number of providers nationally, with NHE reporting just last week that four trusts had been placed into special measures in a matter of days.

Top Image: Peter Byrne PA

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become an NHE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

Wendy Keegan   21/04/2017 at 16:37

I was transferred to Royal Preston last summer from FGH. The treatment which I received in the three weeks I was there was exemplary. I was treated with skill and kindness. Despite the fact that I was completely bedfast and, being considerably overweight, often needed several staff to help me, I was treated with courtesy, kindness and humour, even though staff were often at the end of their shifts, and under considerable pressure. I speak as I find, and I only found kindness and complete professionalism. Thank you Royal Preston. ❤️

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

featured articles

View all News

last word

Foreign patient charges are a distraction from the real issues

Foreign patient charges are a distraction from the real issues

Vivek Kotecha, research officer at the Centre for Health and the Public Interest (CHPI), explains why the charging of foreign patients distracts from our home-grown NHS issues.  The Depart more > more last word articles >

health service focus

View all News

comment

A single approach for purchasing HCTEDs

11/04/2017A single approach for purchasing HCTEDs

Andy Leary, finance director of specialised commissioning (National) at NHS... more >
Filling the void and standardising security

07/04/2017Filling the void and standardising security

Jayne King, chair of the National Association for Healthcare Security (NAHS... more >

interviews

Tight timetable for nursing associate  regulation

28/03/2017Tight timetable for nursing associate regulation

Jackie Smith, chief executive at the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC), t... more >
681 149x260 NHE Subscribe button

the scalpel's daily blog

Labour’s pledge to raise wages for ‘underpaid and overworked’ NHS staff

26/04/2017Labour’s pledge to raise wages for ‘underpaid and overworked’ NHS staff

Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth will today outline a major campaign pledge to axe the NHS pay cap, saying that staff are “underpaid and overworked”. ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

healthcare events

events calendar

back

April 2017

forward
mon tue wed thu fri sat sun
27 28 29 30 31 1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30
1 2 3 4 5 6 7

editor's comment

22/03/2017New additions and unexpected announcements

As NHE went to press, many of us were still recovering from the chancellor’s unexpected health announcements in his last Spring Budget.   While the sector welcomed Philip Hammond’s revelations, centered on capital funding for advanced sustainability and transformation plans (STPs) and A&E triage schemes (page 24), the government failed to address the funding gap still facing the NHS.   Even the £2bn social care windfall, which Treasury has... read more >