Further improvements found at Nottingham’s hospitals | Latest news

Further improvements found at Nottingham’s hospitals

In a sign of further improvement at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust (NUH), two warning notices issued by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) – the independent regulator of healthcare in England - have now been removed.

The CQC issue warning notices when they identify areas of concerns that need significant improvements. In 2021, NUH was issued with a section 29A warning notice due to concerns about the Trust’s leadership and governance. A year later, a similar warning notice was issued due to concerns in maternity services, including staffing.

Since then, improvements have been found in maternity services and in how the Trust is led, as identified by the CQC during their inspection last year.

The inspectors found that maternity services are no longer inadequate and increased the overall rating of the service at both Nottingham City Hospital and Queen’s Medical Centre (QMC) to requires improvement.

The CQC also recognised significant improvements in the Trust’s leadership and culture, and how it is managed, increasing the well-led rating from inadequate to requires improvement. They found a reduction in staff reporting bullying with ‘significant progress in improving the culture’ and an executive team that ‘consistently led with integrity and were open and honest in their approach’.

When lifting the warning notices, the CQC said they were ‘satisfied there have been improvements in the governance arrangements ensuring there is oversight of midwifery staffing and the training requirements of medical and midwifery staff.’ The CQC added that ‘there is oversight in the management of maternity services, there are effective quality assurance systems in place to support safe and quality care, the risk and occurrence of incidents are properly identified and managed including an effective system of recording actions taken and ensuring learning from any incidents and incident grading is reviewed to ensure it is accurate and in line with national guidance.’

As a result of this progress, NUH no longer has any warning notices or conditions on its licence from the CQC.

Speaking about the ongoing improvements, Chief Executive Anthony May, who joined NUH in September 2022, said: “We absolutely know that we have further to go in both of these areas and are committed fully to continuing that progress, but this is an important milestone in our improvement journey which is testament to the continued hard work and dedication of our teams. To the communities that we service, this is further evidence that their hospitals are improving and I would like to record my thanks to all of our colleagues and external partners that are contributing to these improvements.”

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