Merseyside specialist hospital first to be rated 'outstanding'

image copyrightLHCH
image captionThe trust's "innovative projects" and "collaborative working" were praised

A heart and chest hospital has become the first specialist hospital in the country to be rated "outstanding" by the health watchdog.

Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is "of exceptional quality", the Care Quality Commission chief inspector of hospitals said.

It becomes the eighth trust in England and the first in Cheshire and Merseyside to be given the rating.

Chairman Neil Large praised the trust's 1,500 staff and volunteers.

"This rating pays testament to the dedication and professionalism of the team," Mr Large said on behalf of the trust.

image copyrightLHCH
image captionA replacement to the traditional hospital gown was introduced, which "supported the patients' dignity"

The trust runs the largest single-site specialist heart and chest hospital in England, based in Broadgreen, Liverpool.

It specialises in cardiothoracic surgery, cardiology, respiratory medicine including adult cystic fibrosis and diagnostic imaging.

'Leading in its field'

Prof Sir Mike Richards, chief inspector of hospitals, said: "This is a trust that clearly has patient-centred care as a priority, evidenced by consistent positive feedback.

"They are prepared to innovate and work collaboratively across all staff groups."

He highlighted the trust's "chest X-ray competency tool", which has "been shared both nationally and in Europe", calling it "a great example of the trust leading in its field".

"All of this demonstrates that this is one of the best trusts in England and I commend them on their outstanding rating," Sir Mike added.

The report described how there was "a very positive culture throughout the trust" and "staff were proud of the services they delivered".

The report did point out some areas for improvement, including increasing consultant cover and improving policy for administering medicine in end of life care.

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