CQC highlights failings at West Cumberland Hospital

Hospital sign North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust was one of 11 put into special measures

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A troubled Cumbrian hospital must do more to improve the care of patients, according to inspectors from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

A team visited Whitehaven's West Cumberland Hospital last month after a previous visit in May found failings in emergency care and staffing.

While the CQC said some improvements had been made, it concluded agreed standards were still not being met.

North Cumbria Hospitals Trust said it recognised the highlighted failings.

In May, inspectors said patients were waiting too long in the hospital's accident and emergency department and that some were being moved from ward to ward too often.

'Focus and commitment'

They also found there was a shortage of trained staff and that those on duty were working long hours under "immense pressure". Poor record keeping was also noted.

The latest inspection found the hospital was now meeting record-keeping standards, but that significant staff shortages still existed and A&E waiting times were not being met.

Chris Platton, acting director of nursing for the trust, said that although improvements had been made, they recognised that they were "still not fully compliant and our focus and commitment will remain on continuing to move in the right direction".

The trust was put into special measures after high death rates were found following the Keogh review.

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust was due to acquire the West Cumberland Hospital and Carlisle's' Cumberland Infirmary on 1 October, but was been delayed after improvements set out in the review were not met.

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