East Kent Hospitals aims to provide the best possible care for patients but needs to continue to focus on improving services.
In 2014, the Trust was given support under “special measures” with increased levels of oversight and support from national and regional NHS teams to enable improvement.
The Trust’s Care Quality Commission (CQC)rating improved in 2015 from “inadequate” to “requires improvement”. In March 2017, the Trust was taken out of special measures as a result of “further significant improvements” for local patients, although it remained in special measures to receive support to stabilise its finances.
Annual CQC inspections between 2015 and 2018 found areas of significant improvement and a number of areas of outstanding practice and innovation, such as simulation training in maternity services and our use of technology. The dedication and caring nature of the Trust’s staff and areas of improved culture and leadership were also emphasised.
Subsequent reports have continued to highlight areas for improvement and this has also been the case in reports into individual services, for example, in children’s inpatient services following an inspection of the service in 2018; in maternity triage and day care following an inspection in January 2020, which also highlighted a number of improvements; in the emergency departments after an inspection in March 2020 and in infection prevention and control practices following a focussed inspection in August 2020.
After each of these inspections the Trust implemented improvements; most recently the Trust has significantly improved its infection prevention and control performance by carrying out an extensive review of these policies, processes and training.
We are determined to continue to transform our maternity service following the death of baby Harry Richford in 2017 and are liaising with some of the leading maternity experts in the country and are working closely with the independent investigation into maternity services in East Kent.
As well as the overall Trust rating, the CQC gives an individual rating to each of the Trust’s inspected hospitals. You can view these below.