Inspection and Regulation

11.04.18

Third of private hospitals failing on patient safety, says CQC

Almost a third of private hospitals in England are providing substandard care, according to a new report by the CQC.

While the majority (70%) of the 206 independent acute hospitals in England are providing ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ care for their patients, 30% have been rated as ‘requires improvement’ due to concerns over safety.

In its annual report, the CQC found that a lack of formalised governance procedures meant hospitals were not effectively monitoring the work of consultants who operate under “practising privileges” – where a consultant clinician works in a hospital but is not a direct employee.

Concerns were also raised over surgeons not always following safety procedures recommended by the World Health Organisation surgical checklist.

Other issues highlighted by CQC include a failure by some hospitals to adequately monitor clinical outcomes to evaluate the effectiveness of the services they were providing.

Despite this, the report found that most patients have prompt access to effective treatment and experience personalised care from highly-skilled and caring staff, with 89% of hospitals being rated as ‘good’ and 11% rated as ‘outstanding’ for how ‘caring’ their services were.

The majority of hospitals were also rated as good (86%) or outstanding (7%) for how ‘responsive’ they were. Patients were more likely to have named consultants and the hospitals managed their flow of patients well, which meant that there were few cancellations or delayed admissions or procedures.

Responding to the findings, Dr Howard Freeman, clinical director at NHS Partners Network, part of NHS Confederation, said: “Where the CQC has identified areas for further improvement in independent hospitals it is encouraging that it has found that ‘providers have been quick to respond to inspection findings,’ with over half of the independent acute hospitals re-inspected improving their rating.

“We look forward to working closely with the CQC and other bodies to ensure independent hospitals continue to focus on safe, high-quality and responsive care and the best possible patient experience.”

Professor Ted Baker, chief inspector of hospitals at the CQC, added that much of the care observed in the independent acute hospitals is good, with effective leadership, good staff engagement and close oversight of services.

“However, our inspections also identified concerns around the safety and leadership of some services, often as a result of a lack of safety checks and poor monitoring of risks,” he continued.

“Too often, safety was viewed as the responsibility of individual clinicians, rather than a corporate responsibility supported by formal governance processes. Where we found failings, we have been clear that improvements must be made, using our enforcement powers where needed to protect people.”

The CQC first introduced its comprehensive inspection in 2015 with findings being used to improve future regulation of services.

(Top image c. Peter Byrne, PA Wire)

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

national health executive tv

more videos >

latest healthcare news

Highest ever numbers accept GP training posts

19/10/2018Highest ever numbers accept GP training posts

The number of people entering GP training is the highest in NHS history, according to new figures from Health Education England (HEE). A tot... more >
‘No realistic prospect of progress’ for integrated health and social care, PAC warns

19/10/2018‘No realistic prospect of progress’ for integrated health and social care, PAC warns

The government is still “a long way” from achieving an effective strategy for integrated health and social care and has been urged to... more >
One in six trusts could end PFI contracts due to poor performance as NHS heads for £1bn loss

19/10/2018One in six trusts could end PFI contracts due to poor performance as NHS heads for £1bn loss

A new report has revealed that 15% of all NHS trusts using private finance initiatives (PFI) could terminate contracts due to poor performance. ... 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

On your bike!

17/10/2018On your bike!

Sathish Sethuraman, travel and transport plan co-ordinator at Northumbria Healthcare NHS FT, explains how efforts to promote cycling to work at the trust are resulting in more staff travelling on two wheels. At Northumbria Healthcare, we are committed to becoming a greener organisation and reducing the environmental impact of delivering p... more >
read more blog posts from 'the scalpel' >

comment

Recoup and recover

10/10/2018Recoup and recover

The ease and round-the-clock nature of making cashless payments has transformed the way we pay for goods and services – and, from now on, t... more >
The clinical voice at the heart of procurement

10/10/2018The clinical voice at the heart of procurement

Jo Gander, director of the Clinical and Product Assurance (CaPA) team, talks about their role as part of the new NHS Supply Chain. NHS Suppl... more >
Deal or no deal?

10/10/2018Deal or no deal?

Dr Andrew Dearden, BMA treasurer and Brexit lead, takes a look at what different Brexit scenarios could means for both patients and healthcare pr... more >
A push for digital in mental health

10/10/2018A push for digital in mental health

Sean Duggan, chief executive of NHS Confederation’s Mental Health Network, argues that mental health services could hugely benefit from dig... more >

interviews

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