AN MP has branded sections of an inspection report into a heath trust as ‘dire’.
Lindsay Hoyle said the Care Quality Commission document published today, which covered the main hospital in his Chorley constituency, was ‘not good reading’.
He demanded that bosses at The Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust fulfil promises to turn the organisation round.
The CQC report says both its main sites, The Royal Preston and Chorley and South Ribble Hospitals, ‘require improvement’ although both are rated ‘good’ for their caring attitude to patients.
Chief Inspector of Hospitals Professor Sir Mike Richards said: “When we previously inspected the Trust in July 2014 we found a number of areas that required improvement.
“It is disappointing to report that the significant concerns we identified then around patient flow and pressure within the accident and emergency departments remain unresolved, and in some areas that the quality of patient care has declined further.
“Once again we found that patients were waiting too long in A&E, and a high number were placed in areas that weren’t the most appropriate for their needs due to capacity issues.”
The trust provides specialist services (including cancer, transplant, renal and neurological) across the county.
The CQC report finds that Chorley Hospital’s urgent and emergency care service, medical care, maternity and gynaecology, outpatients and diagnostic imaging departments all ‘require improvement’.
Only surgery and critical care are judged to be good .
At the Royal Preston only end of life care gets the overall ‘good’ rating. All other areas are judged as ‘requiring improvement’.
The report reveals that the Chorley Accident and Emergency Department was regularly missing its waiting time targets before it was downgraded to an Urgent Care Centre in April 2016 but was comfortably beating them in its new form when the inspection took place in September.
It says the change increased admission pressures at other A and E departments in Lancashire, notably the Royal Preston.
The Trust reopened its Chorley department for accident and emergency cases 12 hours a day in January.
Mr Hoyle said: “This report does not make good reading and in parts its is dire.
“The trust needs to fulfil its promises on making improvements and that progress is being made.
“The CQC inspectors need to stay in touch with the management and review progress to ensure things are turned round.
“Chorley A and E Department needs to be reopened 24 hours a day to relieve the pressure on other A and E departments across Lancashire. “
Karen Partington, trust Chief Executive, said, “When the CQC visited our hospitals in September, work was well underway to make a range of improvements, so we were able to demonstrate our awareness of what needed to be done, and show the good progress we are making.”
Mr Hoyle added: “I am glad that the inspectors report highlights the work, dedication and caring nature of the staff at the trust in the face of many disadvantages.”
Ms Partington said:“We are pleased that the CQC recognised that our staff are hardworking, caring, and treat patients with kindness and compassion.
“ Inspectors also noted our open and transparent culture, and willingness to learn lessons and continuously improve. So we have the right values, expertise and commitment to move forward, and provide the outstanding care our patients deserve.”