QEQM and William Harvey hospitals receive positive report from CQC for infection measures

QEQM Hospital Photo Chris Constantine

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has published a report following a recent inspection of infection prevention and control measures at East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust.

Inspectors visited the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Hospital and the William Harvey Hospital on March 2 to look at infection prevention and control procedures in place across both hospitals.

As this was a focused inspection, the overall rating of Requires Improvement for the trust remains unchanged but the focused inspection says results were ‘positive.’

A separate report on use of resources rated the Trust as Good.

Cath Campbell, CQC’s head of hospital inspections (South East), said: “Our inspectors found a number of examples of outstanding practice when looking at infection prevention and control measures at East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust. This is particularly commendable during a period when the trust has had to deal with extreme pressure on resources as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In August, we took urgent enforcement action and imposed conditions relating to infection prevention and control practices after inspecting the emergency department and medical wards at William Harvey Hospital. I am pleased to report that the trust took immediate action to address the issues raised, so these conditions were lifted on 29 March.

“Leaders also adopted learnings from other trusts, and from NHS Improvement which led to the development of a detailed infection prevention and control improvement plan. The trust then set up an improvement group to focus on implementing the actions in the plan and put a committee in place to review internal audit data and led improvements based on this information.

“Although there were still one or two areas for improvement which we have advised the trust to look at now, overall, this is a very positive report.”

Susan Acott, EKHUFT Chief Executive, said: “We welcome the CQC’s report, which reflects the hard work of our staff.

“The CQC found staff were focused on the infection prevention and control needs of patients, and identified several areas of outstanding practice, including how staff were protecting clinically extremely vulnerable patients from infection, and changes to resuscitation areas in the emergency departments to help keep staff and patients safe.

  “I would like to thank our staff for their care and commitment.”