Hereford & Worcester

Worcestershire NHS Trust: Special measures could end

Worcestershire Royal Hospital - generic image Image copyright PA
Image caption Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has been in special measures for almost four years

Almost four years of special measures at a hospital trust could end after inspectors found improvements.

Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust was judged inadequate after a 2018 inspection but is now rated as requires improvement by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Inspectors said they found "significant improvements" at the trust, but added "more is needed".

The trust said the report was a "very encouraging sign".

The CQC recommended ending special measures at the trust with an NHS "support package" that will be agreed between the CQC and NHS England.

A decision will now be taken by the NHS Trust Development Authority following the recommendation.

'A lot more to do'

The trust "can be proud of the progress achieved", chief inspector Ted Baker said, and the support package must ensure it is "able to continue to build on the progress already made".

The CQC had previously raised concerns about overcrowded departments and the number of patients being cared for in emergency department corridors.

After the latest inspection, carried out in May and June, the CQC said work was still required at the trust's Worcestershire Royal Hospital to "ensure people always had timely access to the right care".

Improvements were recorded at all of the trust's main hospital sites in Kidderminster, Redditch and Worcester. However, Evesham Community Hospital saw a decline in its overall rating.

Chief executive of the trust Matthew Hopkins said the rating was "well deserved recognition".

"We have taken a really important step forward," he said.

"We know we have a lot more to do, but these improved ratings are a clear and very encouraging sign that our efforts are paying off."

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