Lincolnshire hospitals boss Jane Lewington: 'We can learn to improve standards from others.'
The boss of United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust has welcomed Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s announcement to bring in super managers from successful hospitals to boost performance.
Mr Hunt has revealed that managers will be sent to 11 trusts including ULHT following the Keogh review into hospitals with high mortality rates.
ULHT has been partnered with Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, whose clinicians and managers will work with it to help deliver improvements.
The Trust is now delivering a robust action addressing the issues raised within the Keogh review and associated Care Quality Commission inspection.
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ULHT chief executive Jane Lewington said: "We welcome this partnership. Sheffield is a high performing and large trust and they will have practices and systems we can learn from.
“We look forward to working closely with the Sheffield team and driving improvements together to the benefit of local patients.
“What is most important to us is using this new partnership to increase the pace of our improvements."
The Care Quality Commission, prompted by Keogh’s findings, made visits to Lincoln County Hospital and Boston Pilgrim Hospital over seven days in June and July and has now told the trust it must take responsibility and make sure standards are improved.
The CQC said it found the two hospitals failed to meet any of the national standards of care, welfare and staffing it was measured on.
Inspectors found low staffing levels had an impact across the hospital including in the care and treatment of patients, communication between clinical staff, the maintenance of patient records and access to staff training and appraisals.
Staff could not always respond to the needs of patients, not all care needs were assessed or planned on a timely way and there were concerns surrounding the documentation and decision making about whether to resuscitate patients.
But the CQC said the trust needs time to meet the targeted improvements in its post-Keogh action plan and health bosses say great progress is already being made.
ULHT’s death rate, the basis for the Keogh review, is now about 83, compared to 113 in 2010/11.
Meanwhile, in comparison to 186 hospitals, Pilgrim Hospital is top when it comes to treating hip fracture patients quickly.
In terms of addressing staff shortage issues, ULHT has recruited 165 nurses from the UK since April this year, and is taking on 90 newly qualified nurses who trained in-house next week.
The trust is looking to recruit nurses from overseas and from within the UK.