Kettering Hospital: Inspectors call for urgent changes

Kettering General Hospital Inspection finds unclean toilets and failures to make risk assessments for discharged patients

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A hospital in Northamptonshire has been told to improve quality and safety to comply with national standards.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspected Kettering General Hospital after concerns were raised.

Inspectors found incomplete audits, action plans not followed through and an A&E facility "not fit for purpose".

"The Trust has been very concerned by some of the inspection findings," chief executive Lorene Read said.

"We have been vigorously addressing the issues raised."

Inspectors found patients were not being cared for in a clean environment and protected from the risk of infection.

Dirty floors

Staff were not being properly trained and given the chance to develop and improve their skills.

The CQC also found there was no system for the risk assessment of patients.

The hospital lacked adequate quality checking systems to manage risks and assure the health, welfare and safety of patients.

The report said that in some areas of the hospital floors appeared dirty with needles and syringes openly-stored in the area.

Inspectors also found some public toilets were dirty.

The CQC inspectors assessed the hospital on 16 national standards in March and found failures on three.

An enforcement notice was issued this week demanding improvements.

Staff 'attentive'

The Trust must give CQC a report setting out the actions it will take to meet the required standards by 8 May.

Mrs Read said: "While it is true that our hospital has been experiencing some of the highest emergency pressures in its history this should not be a reason for individuals to fail to follow procedures which are designed to keep patients safe and well cared for at all times.

"While our action plan is comprehensive and addresses all of the issues raised by the CQC I also think that it is important that, for balance, we also recognise some of the positive points that the inspection found.

"Comments to inspectors from patients included 'staff were very attentive', 'cleanliness is superb here' and 'staff are warm and friendly and put me at ease'.

"The inspectors also made some supportive statements around our infection control procedures, on general cleanliness (apart from A&E), and found patients had many complimentary things to say about staff being competent, well trained, friendly and polite."

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