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Warwickshire hospital trust not improved in four years after ‘hugely disappointing’ report

A hospital trust in Warwickshire has failed to improve on its CQC rating since 2014, after the latest report found problems with senior leadership and end of life care.

George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust was hit with a ‘requires improvement’ rating for the second time following a routine inspection of its main facility in October 2017.

Inspectors said the trust needed to improve in four of its five categories including being safe, effective, responsive and well-led, although it was rated as ‘good’ for being caring.

Trust bosses said they had already pointed out issues in end of life care and other “areas of concern” before the visit and explained that work was already underway to deal with the problems, which has now been accelerated following the report.

“I welcome the CQC’s findings that our staff across the hospital cared for patients with compassion and involved them and those close to them in decisions about their care and treatment,” commented, Kath Kelly, George Eliot Hospital’s CEO.

“However, the inspectors have identified areas that need to improve and have applied an overall trust rating of ‘requires improvement’. This is hugely disappointing for the hospital’s trust board and our hard-working staff, who give their all-in caring for our patients.”

Kelly went on to say the trust had a “comprehensive action plan” developed by the hospital’s new improvement board, which she felt confident would improve the situation.

However, Professor Ted Baker, chief inspector of hospitals, said inspectors were “disappointed that several ratings at George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust had declined” since the last inspection took place in 2014 and outlined specific concerns around urgent and emergency care and end of life services.

Certain senior leaders in the urgent and emergency care services were found to be unaware of potential risks to patients in their departments, while others were criticised for not being visible to staff.

In addition, there were no dedicated triage nurses in post and not all staff at the trust had been trained to triage patients.

Although Baker did point out a number of issues, he also confirmed that the trust had recognised its need to make improvements.

He added: “The trust leadership knows what it needs to do to bring about the necessary improvements and we will return to check on progress.”

The full report is available to view here.

Top image: Joe Giddens PA Archive

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