There was a routine inspection of the East and North Herts NHS trust recently. The report published last week highlighted 19 different areas of outstanding practice, with just five where ongoing improvement needed to be made. Alarming articles subsequently appeared in some national newspapers. For balance, here’s the rest of the story:-
from the report of Professor Sir Mike Richards, the Chief Inspector of Hospitals
“We saw several areas of outstanding practice including:-
- The trust’s diabetes team won a prestigious national “Quality in Care Diabetes” award in the best inpatient care initiative category.
- The trust developed an outreach team to deliver seven day, proactive ward rounds specifically targeting high-risk patients.
- The day surgery unit had been awarded the Purple Star, which is a recognised award to a service for improving health care for people with learning disabilities. We saw patients with learning disabilities and their relative receiving high levels of outstanding care.
- The ophthalmology department had implemented a minor injuries service. Patients could be referred directly from accident and emergency, their GP or opticians to be seen on the same day.
- The Lister Robotic Urological Fellowship is an accredited and recognized robotic urological training fellowship programme in the UK by the Royal College of Surgeons of England and British Association of Urological Surgeons. This technique is thought to have significantly reduced positive margin rate during robotic prostatectomy and improved patient functional outcome.
- We saw some examples of excellence within the maternity service.The foetal medicine service offers some services above the requirements of a typical district general hospital such as invasive procedures and diagnostic tests.
- The radiotherapy service provides IMRT (Intensity Modulated Radiotherapy) to a higher percentage of patients than the England average. The service provided a good range in IGRT (Image Guided Radiotherapy). Together these are indicators of a high quality radiotherapy service.
- The radiotherapy service had a strong reputation nationally as a major contributor to clinical trials.
- The cancer centre is one of the top ten centres in the country for research and innovation.
- Care shown to patients undergoing chemotherapy and the community children’s and young people’s service was outstanding.
- Effective multidisciplinary working was evident throughout all departments.
- All staff were proud to work for MVCC and many described it as a special place to work.
- The children’s community nursing (CCN) service, children’s continuing care (CCC) the specialist health visitors (HV,) community paediatrics and the school nursing service were identified as being creative and innovative in finding solutions to the complex care and support needs of CYP.
- Children were truly respected and valued as individuals and encouraged to self-care and were supported to achieve their full potential within the limitations of their clinical condition. Feedback from children who use the service, parents and stakeholders was continually positive about the way staff treated people.
- National audits for children and young peoples health in diabetes and epilepsy scored highly (100% for epilepsy and the fourth highest in the country for diabetes) for patient experience.
- Parents said staff did everything they possibly could to support the child and the family which exceeded their expectations. Parents told us staff went the “extra mile” and gave examples of how staff had actively supported their child and the family throughout the care episode.“
Before the inspection team left the Trust last October, its lead inspector, Professor Sir Norman Williams, stated that the Trust was clearly an organisation on an upward trajectory. Work began last October on the areas where the inspectors had asked for action to be taken.
Stevenage Labour Party is grateful for the work of all our NHS staff and is proud to support our local hospitals and the NHS trust in all their work for the local community despite underfunding, overwork, an unaudited health Secretary, constant right-wing press sniping and creeping privatisation.