October 23 2014 Latest news:
Adam Gretton, Health correspondent
Friday, March 14, 2014
A Norfolk hospital, which was placed in special measures last year, remains amongst the poorest performing trusts in the country, according to a new report by the health watchdog.
Officials from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn said they would seek to make further improvements following the publication of the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) updated intelligent monitoring reports.
The analysis reveals the performance of 161 acute hospitals across the country using 150 indicators and has ranked trusts between one and six, with those at most risk with the lowest score.
The QEH, which has a new management team in place after being placed in special measures, is among 16 hospitals that have been ranked in band one by the CQC’s new monitoring system.
The quarterly results, based on indicators from the NHS staff survey, the national inpatient survey, emergency readmissions and concerns raised by staff in trusts, will help the watchdog to prioritise its hospital inspection regime.
All hospitals are set to receive a more comprehensive inspection by December 2015, which will rank trusts as outstanding, good, requiring improvement, or inadequate.
The other two acute hospitals in Norfolk have seen their CQC ratings improve.
The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, which was in band three in October, is now in band six - the best possible ranking. The James Paget Hospital in Gorleston has also improved from band four to five.
Officials at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in King’s Lynn said they were seeking further information from the CQC after a draft version of their intelligent monitoring report did not tally up with the one published.
The latest report by the health watchdog kept the hospital in the highest risk banding and gave an overall risk score of eight out of a maximum possible risk score of 184.
The report said the hospital had elevated risks relating to in-hospital mortality on patients with haematological conditions, its governance risk rating from regulator Monitor, and on whistleblowing alerts. Concern was also raised on the trust’s NHS staff survey results on the percentage of staff reporting good communication between senior management and staff.
A QEH spokesman said: “We are in priority band 1 because we are a trust currently in special measures. In most categories of the report we are listed as having no evidence of risk. However, we will be studying the report in greater detail to identify any areas where further work may be needed.”
The Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital has jumped into the top tier of the CQC’s monitoring report, meaning that the watchdog has few concerns about patient care.
The Colney hospital has an overall risk score of three from a maximum possible risk score of 184. The watchdog raises an elevated risk on mortality ratio indicators and a risk on knee replacements, according to the latest report.
Anna Dugdale, chief executive, said: “We are delighted that this very comprehensive assessment of the quality and safety of care and services provided at our hospitals demonstrates that we are providing the highest standards of care to the people of Norfolk. The intelligent monitoring report produced by CQC provides reassurance and confirmation that we are delivering care to Norfolk which is amongst the very highest standards in the country.”
The James Paget University Hospital has improved since the Care Quality Commission’s last intelligent monitoring report was published in October.
The hospital trust’s overall risk score is six out of a possible risk score of 186. The CQC report identifies only two risks on staff vaccination uptake and hospital transfer delays and two elevated risks on never event incidents and referral to treatment.
Christine Allen, chief executive, said the trust had taken action to reduce the risks identified within the last CQC report.
“Overall, the report provides a useful overview for the trust. Band 5 places the hospital in the lower risk categories. The report is important as it forms part of the data we use to benchmark the quality and efficiency of the care we provide. We are pleased to see that we are continuing to improve, and we will continue to focus on areas requiring further development,” she said.
The West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds is also ranked in band six in its monitoring report.
Stephen Graves, chief executive of the hospital, said: “We are very pleased with the outcome of the CQC’s intelligence monitoring report, which comes shortly after we were named as the Midland and East Dr Foster Trust of the Year in recognition of our good performance and the high quality services we provide. For all of these separate indicators to show that we are performing well is a testament to the hard work of our staff and great news for everyone using West Suffolk Hospital.”