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Inspection Summary


Overall summary & rating

Updated 20 February 2020

Viking Medical Solutions is operated by Viking Medical Solutions Ltd. We inspected patient transport services only. This was a very small aspect of the activities that the service provides as the main service is event first aid cover and first aid training, which are out of scope of regulation.

At the time of our inspection the service employed two permanent staff, including the registered manager for the service. Viking Medical Solutions used the support of 49 other temporary bank staff, many of whom are employed in other substantive roles within NHS organisations. The service has two vehicles which can be used for conveying patients however only one was available for use at the time of our inspection. The other being off the road at the time of inspection with engine trouble.

We inspected the safe and well led areas of the service using our responsive inspection methodology. We did this in response to concerns being raised with us relating to issues under these domains. We carried out the short announced inspection on 14 August 2019. We did not rate the service on this occasion and found;

  • The service provided mandatory training in key skills including safeguarding to all staff and made sure everyone completed it.

  • The service controlled infection risk well. Staff used equipment and control measures to protect patients, themselves and others from infection. They kept equipment, vehicles and premises visibly clean.

  • Staff completed risk assessments for each patient and removed or minimised risks.

  • The service had enough staff with the right qualifications, skills, training and experience to keep patients safe from avoidable harm and to provide the right care and treatment. Managers regularly reviewed and adjusted staffing levels and skill mix and ensured all bank staff had a full induction.

  • Staff kept suitable records of patients’ care and treatment. Patient record forms (PRFs) were clear, stored securely and available to staff providing care.

  • The service used systems and processes to safely prescribe, administer, record and store medicines.

  • Staff recognised incidents and near misses and reported them appropriately. When things went wrong, staff apologised and gave patients honest information and suitable support. Managers ensured that actions from patient safety alerts were implemented and monitored.

  • Staff we spoke with were clear about their roles and accountabilities and had regular opportunities to meet, discuss and learn from the performance of the service.

  • The service leaders had the clinical knowledge and skills to run the service. They were visible and approachable and supported staff to develop their skills.

  • There was a strong focus on providing quality event care and developing the business to participate in the patient transport market.

  • They had plans to cope with unexpected events and managers ensured day to day decisions avoided financial pressures compromising the quality of care.

  • The service leaders were responsive following issues and concerns raised and worked swiftly to put processes in place to identify and monitor risk.

However, we found the following issues that the service provider needs to improve:

  • The service leaders lacked oversight of the priorities and issues the service faced.

  • The design, maintenance and use of facilities, premises and equipment were not always managed to keep people safe.

  • Managers investigated incidents but it was not obvious if lessons learned were shared with the staff.

  • The service did not have a formal vision or business strategy in place to help deliver on strategic and operational objectives,

  • The governance processes were insufficient, however on identifying weaknesses the service worked swiftly to resolve these.

  • There was a lack of documented risk management and performance.

Following this inspection, we told the provider that it must make improvements, to help the service improve.

Professor Sir Mike Richards

Chief Inspector of Hospitals

Inspection areas

Safe

Updated 20 February 2020

Effective

Updated 20 February 2020

Caring

Updated 20 February 2020

Responsive

Updated 20 February 2020

Well-led

Updated 20 February 2020

Checks on specific services

Patient transport services

Updated 20 February 2020