Inspection and Regulation


CQC bumps Yorkshire ambulance trust to ‘good’ after impressive one-year progress

The CQC has upgraded its rating of Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust (YAS) to ‘good’ following substantial improvements in the trust over the past few years.

YAS, which covers almost 6,000sqm of terrain across Yorkshire and serves a population of over five million people, had been told to make improvements in certain areas in January 2015, when it was rated as ‘requires improvement’ overall.  

While YAS was found to be a caring trust in 2015, the CQC had told the trust that it needed to improve its safety, effectiveness and responsiveness of its service.

But during a follow-up focused inspection during September and October last year, inspectors found that it was clear the provider had “worked hard to address the issues we raised”.

Professor Sir Mike Richards, the CQC’s chief inspector of hospitals, who will soon be retiring, added: “We were impressed with the improvements we saw, and the staff at YAS should be pleased with their new rating.

“This rating amendment reflects the changes they have made; we saw a trust with a much improved approach to safety, and one that was addressing national staff shortages through a range of local initiatives.

“We saw improvements in the effectiveness of the service provided. At our previous inspection, YAS was one of the worst performing ambulance trusts for reviving patients after a cardiac arrest. However, data gathered as part of this inspection showed it to now be among the top performing. We also saw improved response times which were leading to better outcomes for patients.”

The CQC inspected a wide range of YAS services including its emergency operations centres, urgent and emergency care, patient transport services and resilience services such as its NHS 111 service.

Inspectors found that YAS had made progress in areas such as staff engagement and relationships with trade unions and more thorough equipment checks and maintenance. They also noted several areas of outstanding practice in the trust, such as integrated emergency care and the use of antibiotics when treating open bone fractures.

However, the CQC said that the provider must work to sustain these changes and still identified further concerns, particularly regarding the availability of “suitably skilled, qualified and experienced” staff and the cleanliness on its patient transport services, including ambulances.

“We are delighted with the outcome of the CQC’s recent inspection of our organisation,” said Rod Barnes, YAS chief executive. “It makes me immensely proud that the commitment of our staff and volunteers and the great care they provide have been formally recognised.

“We do recognise, however, that there is always more we can do to improve our services and the reports have highlighted a number of areas for attention.”

The trust noted that it will use the CQC’s feedback to help shape its future plans for development and raise its standards further.

Today’s rating closely follows a damning report from the National Audit Office last week, which found that ambulance services are struggling to cope with rising demand for urgent and emergency services as it urged CCGs to see these services as an integral part of the healthcare system.

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


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment


national health executive tv

more videos >

latest healthcare news

Over one billion community prescriptions dispensed as ‘inevitable’ rise continues

16/03/2018Over one billion community prescriptions dispensed as ‘inevitable’ rise continues

The number of prescription items dispensed in the community in England increased last year, according to NHS Digital’s latest figures. In ... more >
Controversial hospital demolition plans stalled by major judicial review

16/03/2018Controversial hospital demolition plans stalled by major judicial review

A campaign group has won the right to a judicial review against the demolition of Huddersfield Royal Infirmary (HRI). Hands Off HRI mounted its ... more >
‘More work must be done’ as less than half of junior doctors entering specialist training

16/03/2018‘More work must be done’ as less than half of junior doctors entering specialist training

The number of junior doctors entering specialist training immediately after completing their foundation years is continuing to decline, according t... more >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital e... read more >

last word

Hard to be optimistic

Hard to be optimistic

Rachel Power, chief executive of the Patients Association, warns that we must be realistic about the very real effects of continued underfunding across the health service. It’s now bey... more > more last word articles >

the scalpel's daily blog

International Women’s Day: time for change in gender pay

08/03/2018International Women’s Day: time for change in gender pay

Dean Royles, director of human resources and organisational development at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, analyses the latest gender pay gap report released by trusts in Yorkshire. Today, 8 March, is International Women’s Day – a day to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day ... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >


Data saves lives

14/02/2018Data saves lives

Kuldeep Sohal, programme manager at Connected Yorkshire, part of Connected Health Cities, discusses how data sharing across the north is improvin... more >
Celebrating 75 years of healthcare

14/02/2018Celebrating 75 years of healthcare

Julian Amey, chief executive of the Institute of Healthcare Engineering & Estate Management (IHEEM), outlines what the coming year holds for ... more >
The HSIB approach to maternity investigations

14/02/2018The HSIB approach to maternity investigations

Jane Rintoul, director of strategy and policy and programme director for maternity investigations at the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (... more >
Our work can help ease A&E pressures

09/02/2018Our work can help ease A&E pressures

Last year, NICE guidelines recommended that the NHS should provide more advanced paramedic practitioners (APPs) to relieve pressure on emergency ... more >


Duncan Selbie: A step on the journey to population health

24/01/2018Duncan Selbie: A step on the journey to population health

The NHS plays a part in the country’s wellness – but it’s far from being all that matters. Duncan Selbie, chief executive of Pu... more >
Cutting through the fake news

22/11/2017Cutting through the fake news

In an era of so-called ‘fake news’ growing alongside a renewed focus on reducing stigma around mental health, Paul Farmer, chief exec... more >
Tackling infection prevention locally

04/10/2017Tackling infection prevention locally

Dr Emma Burnett, a lecturer and researcher in infection prevention at the University of Dundee’s School of Nursing and Midwifery and a boar... more >
Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

02/10/2017Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

NHE interviews Gillian Fox, head of eProcurement (Scan4Safety) programme at NHS Supply Chain. How has the Scan4Safety initiative evolved sin... more >

health service focus

View all News