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The CQC’s “Good” rating shows some significant improvements across both hospitals in the services they chose to inspect: in particular at St Peter’s Hospital.

Chief Executive, Suzanne Rankin, said: “I am delighted with the outcome of this inspection and that we have maintained our overall Trust rating of ‘Good’ since the last inspection in 2015. I’m particularly proud to see some fantastic improvements – the overall rating for St Peter’s Hospital and for our Children and Young People’s service is now ‘Good’ and our Critical Care service classed as ‘Outstanding’.

“In the current context of the pressures we face, which include very high demand on our services, challenging staffing levels, difficulties in recruitment and in some circumstances working with some very old infrastructure – this is a fantastic achievement. It is testament to the hard work and dedication of every member of the team at both Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals and in addition, provides important regulatory assurance on the quality of our services to the local population we serve.”

The CQC provide an overall rating for the Trust, individual ratings for each hospital and specific ratings for certain services and measures and the most significant of these were:

  • Our Critical Care service is rated as ‘Outstanding’ – a huge improvement from the ‘Requiring Improvement’ rating in 2015 and a phenomenal achievement, reflecting the team’s particular strengths in providing high quality, compassionate care and leadership.
  • The CQC also inspected the Children’s and Young People’s, Medicine and Outpatients services at St Peter’s Hospital. All are rated as ‘Good’ and for the Children’s and Young People’s service this is an improvement from the 2015 rating of ‘Requiring Improvement’, so a great result for the team.
  • In the measures of being Caring, Effective, Responsive and Well-led, the Trust is found to be ‘Good’. This is the same as 2015 and shows consistency in the service provided to patients.
  • Use of Resources is a new holistic measure of productivity and sustainability and we are rated as ‘Good’. To achieve this rating for both quality and efficiency in this challenging environment is a real achievement and the CQC particularly recognised our strong financial performance and pro-active approach to reducing emergency readmissions.
  • Ashford Hospital is rated overall as ‘Requiring Improvement’, with some areas for improvement identified around safety and leadership in the Outpatients service and we will be working closely with the relevant teams to produce robust action plans. Ashford Hospital remains an important part of the Trust, offering many highly regarded services to the local population. Supporting the improvements necessary will be a high priority for the Board and leadership team.

Medical Director David Fluck and Chief Nurse Sue Tranka said: “Overall, this is a really antastic result and we are so proud of all our colleagues. The CQC report paints a picture of high quality and responsive care, good leadership and management. We know, of course, that we still have some work to do and safety issues to improve upon and we have been putting specific action plans in place, which we have shared with the CQC and throughout the Trust.”