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Care Quality Commission rates University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust as Good, following inspection

11 February 2020
  • Media

England's Chief Inspector of Hospitals has welcomed improvements at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Inspectors rated the trust Good overall, following their visit in October and November 2019. The trust is also rated Good for being safe, effective, caring and well-led. It is rated Requires Improvement for being responsive.

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust was previously rated Requires Improvement, following an inspection in 2018.

In an additional assessment, carried out by NHS Improvement alongside CQC’s latest inspection, the trust is rated Requires Improvement for using its resources productively.

CQC Chief Inspector of Hospitals, Professor Ted Baker, said:

“Our latest inspection found several areas where the quality of care and treatment had improved at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, compared to our 2018 findings.

“Urgent and emergency care at University Hospital Coventry had enough staff with the right training and skills. The department’s infection risk was well controlled, and staff acted quickly for patients at risk of deterioration. Records were appropriate, and information was used to improve the service.

“University Hospital Coventry’s critical care – which monitors and treats people with life-threatening conditions – helped patients make informed decisions about their care and achieve good outcomes. The hospital’s maternity service worked in a safe and well-designed environment, where staff managed incidents well.

“Outpatient services at the Hospital of St Cross, in Rugby, benefitted from leaders who engaged openly with patients, staff, equality groups, the public and local organisations to plan, manage and improve services.

“However, the inspection identified some issues for the trust to address. On University Hospital Coventry’s neurosurgery ward, some staff were not compliant with training requirements and infection risk was not consistently well controlled. There were not enough nursing and support staff with the right qualifications, skills and training. Records did not always follow national guidance.

“I welcome the improvements the trust has made. Its board knows the issues it needs to address. We continue to monitor the trust and will return to carry out further inspections.”

See the full reports for the trust.

Inspectors witnessed areas of outstanding practice across the trust, including:

  • A new tool to manage referral to treatment waiting times, which was being implemented. This used seasonal fluctuations to help plan referrals.
  • A very proactive patient safety response team, supporting immediate review of all significant incidents.
  • An effective process in urgent and emergency care at University Hospital Coventry to escalate patients requiring further assessment.
  • Exceptional support for staff development in critical care at University Hospital Coventry. The department’s inclusive culture fostered a collaborative approach to improving care.
  • A world-class centre studying miscarriage, operating in the maternity service at University Hospital Coventry. Tommy's National Centre for Miscarriage Research includes a biomedical research unit with dedicated midwives recruiting patients for National Institute for Health Research studies.

The trust has been told it must make some improvements, all in neurosurgery at University Hospital Coventry, including:

  • Ensuring patients who may lack capacity to consent to routine care and treatment are appropriately assessed. This must be recorded in patient records.
  • Consultants must work within guidelines.
  • Effective governance procedures must be used – particularly throughout theatres – to ensure quality, risk management and performance is accurately recorded and reviewed.
  • Nurse staffing must be addressed to ensure patients are safe.


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Last updated:
11 February 2020

Notes to editors

Whenever CQC inspects a service we will always ask the following five questions:
  • Is it safe?
  • Is it effective?
  • Is it caring?
  • Is it responsive to people’s needs?
  • Is it well-led?

Under CQC’s current programme of inspections, we aim to inspect every NHS trust at least once between June 2017 and spring 2019. We use information that we hold on each trust to inform our decision about when and what to inspect.

During the unannounced inspection we will normally look in detail at certain core services - based on previous inspection findings, as well as wider intelligence - followed by an inspection of how well-led a provider is.

Our previous inspections of NHS trusts have shown a strong link between the quality of overall management of a trust and the quality of its services. For that reason, all trust inspections now include inspection of the well-led key question at the trust level.

Each inspection team is led by a member of CQC’s staff and includes specialist professional advisors such as clinicians and pharmacists. Where appropriate, an inspection team will also include Experts by Experience. These are people who have experienced care personally or experience of caring for someone who has received a particular type of care.

How CQC monitors, inspects and regulates NHS trusts

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.