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Chief Inspector of Hospitals rates Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust as Good

1 December 2016
Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust
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England's Chief Inspector of Hospitals has rated Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust as Good overall following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission.

Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust was rated as Good for being effective, caring, responsive and well-led and Requires Improvement for being safe following inspections in July this year.

The trust provides local elective and emergency services to 380,000 people living in and around the districts of Chelmsford, Maldon and Braintree. It was inspected in November and December 2014 and it was rated as Requires Improvement overall.

A number of improvements had been made since CQC’s last visit and this means the trust’s rating has now changed to Good overall.

CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals, Professor Sir Mike Richards, said:

“Our inspectors found a number of improvements had been made at Mid Essex Hospital Services NHS Trust since our last inspection.

“The leadership of the interim chief executive has driven significant improvements at the trust and this was evident during our inspection. They were well known, approachable and visible to all staff.

“The trust has moved from a culture of blame, with staff not feeling supported or listened to, to one of openness and transparency. The previous culture of fear had been dispelled and staff now felt empowered to perform well across all services.

“Our inspectors observed that staff consistently acted in a friendly and caring manner with people who used the service and those close to them.

“We were particularly impressed with the trust’s burns service where we witnessed extremely good care. The service had innovative developments and plans and outcomes for patients with serious burns were comparably amongst the best in the world and were consistently exceptional.

“The trust should be proud of the progress made and it knows what it needs to ensure the necessary improvements are made which we will check on when we next inspect.”

Full reports for the trust have been published on this website. 

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

  • The ‘trigger and response team’ team were an exceptional team supporting acutely unwell patients throughout the hospital. The team were recognised throughout the hospital as being very responsive.
  • The trust’s upper gastro-intestinal (UGI) surgery was internationally recognised and had recently introduced leading edge robotic technology.
  • The burns and plastics services were extremely good and ensured that services users were involved and central to the innovation in services. The directorate had recently introduced an electronic live trauma database. This meant that staff had up-to-date information about the trauma service. Outcomes for patients with serious burns were comparable among the best in the world and were consistently exceptional.
  • There was a dedicated ‘birth reflections’ clinic, which helped women who had felt that they had not experienced the birth that they had planned for, or felt levels of anxiety or stress which related to the birth experience.
  • The mortuary team were innovative and passionate about providing a good patient experience at the end of life.

There were some areas where improvements must be made, including:

  • Patient records in the orthopaedic clinic must be stored securely.
  • The trust must ensure that rapid discharge of patients at the end of their life is monitored, targeted and managed appropriately.
  • Medication, specifically paracetamol must be prescribed clearly including the route of administration. The provider must also ensure that patient’s weight is recorded for patient’s prescribed VTE prophylaxis and follow the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines.
  • Staff must be provided with appraisals that are valuable and benefit development.


For further information, please contact Regional Engagement Officer, Helen Gildersleeve, on 0191 233 3379.

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Last updated:
29 May 2017

Notes to editors

Whenever CQC inspects it will always ask the following five questions of every service: Is it safe? Is it effective? Is it caring? Is it responsive to people’s needs? Is it well-led? You can find out more about CQC’s approach to inspection on our website at


Registered providers of health and social care services are required to display their ratings on their premises and on their websites so that the public can see their rating quickly and easily. For further information on the requirement for providers to prominently display their CQC ratings, please visit: