CQC report praises Halton
Halton General Hospital has been found to be providing the very highest standards of NHS care following a recent unannounced inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
Inspectors from the healthcare watchdog spent two days at Halton General at the start of October as part of their inspection programme. The team included inspectors and also a member of the public who spoke to patients. They visited wards and departments observing care in practice and spoke in depth to both staff and patients. The inspection started with an evening visit to the Minor Injuries Unit and also took in the wards at the main hospital. The trust’s Cheshire and Merseyside Treatment Centre on the site, which has reopened as an orthopaedic surgery centre, was also visited.
The report from the CQC has now been published and found that care at Halton met all of the essential standards that they look for in their four core areas of consent to care and treatment; care and welfare of patients; management of medicines; and staffing.
The report shows that patients are well cared for, communicated with and their needs met at Halton. Patients spoken to felt that they had a full and clear understanding of their individual programmes of care and treatment. They commented that they felt they were given sufficient details and answers to any questions they may have, which they felt allowed them to make informed decisions.
Inspectors noted a person-centred approach to care and treatment, both in the written records examined and in their observations of the interaction between staff and patients that demonstrated consultation and engagement with each patient as an individual. Medicines were managed appropriately and patients were seen to be given excellent pain relief. They also found that the trust has the right staff in post on the wards with staff morale seen to be high.
Comments included in the report from patients included one who said "I have been on this ward before I'm a bit of a regular and every time I come here I receive the same high level of care. I know a lot of the staff quite well and you can always have a laugh and a joke with them even though you can see how much they have to do, they are dedicated to their jobs and they deserve medals".
Another patient said "I arrived on the ward last evening in a lot of pain and I was very upset and nervous, the staff have been marvellous with me I cannot thank them enough, they got me comfortable and made sure I was pain free as quickly as possible… I feel a lot better this morning and feel I will be ok here and hopefully be able to go home soon".
Mel Pickup, chief executive at Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:
“This is an excellent report that shows that the services are Halton General are meeting the very highest standards that are looked for in the NHS. The inspectors spoke to patients and staff across the hospital and found first class levels of care and compassion on our wards. To get such a positive report from an inspection is very rare and we’re extremely proud of the services that we provide at the hospital. This report is a credit to all the staff that provide care to local patients at Halton.”
The CQC has also recently banded each hospital trust into one of six categories based on the risk that people may not be receiving safe, effective, high quality care - with band 1 being the highest risk and band 6 the lowest risk of problems. Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which includes Halton General, was been placed in Band 5 of the six bands based on this comprehensive range of indicators quality and safety.
Mel Pickup continued:
“Publishing these risk monitoring reports is a really important step in ensuring patients can access the information that they need on their local hospitals.They give an indication of the overall performance, quality and safety at a trust and we are in a good position. Our staff continually work to build a culture of high quality, safe healthcare here at the hospitals.“
The CQC have made all of the risk banding information from across the NHS available publically for the first time. As well as informing their inspection regime, it also allows trusts to use the information to help improve performance in the future.
A list of which trust is in which banding and full reports can be found at http://www.cqc.org.uk/public/hospital-intelligent-monitoring
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