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Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust rated Good by CQC

22 February 2019
Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust
  • Media

The Care Quality Commission has rated Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust as Good overall. Previously it was rated Requires Improvement.

The trust was rated Good in all categories, for being safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led, following an inspection in October and November 2018.

The trust has three main locations: Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea; Harefield Hospital, north London and Royal Brompton & Harefield Specialist care in Wimpole Street, central London. The trust is England’s only specialist heart and lung unit in the country that treats both children and adults.

Inspectors found some outstanding care at the trust. At Royal Brompton Hospital, the critical care unit demonstrated excellent multidisciplinary working practices which enabled collaboration in improvement projects and enhanced patient care.

Also at Royal Brompton Hospital, staff at the Children and Young People’s service spoke very highly of the culture there. The service went above and beyond for its patients and patient families. Including the creation of social clubs for patients of all ages.

At Harefield Hospital, inspectors saw new ways of working were adopted to keep patients safe. For example, staff were given designated roles at the beginning of each shift to adopt in the event of cardiac arrest and wore badges to ensure their roles was clearly identified. The surgery services were developing a virtual reality goggle system which would allow patients to become familiar with the hospital surroundings. The service conducted 360-degree filming and was in the process of purchasing virtual goggles for patients to facilitate this technology.

However, there are areas where the trust must improve:

  • it must ensure that all the relevant information is brought together in one place in a Board Assurance Framework document so that board members have oversight of the effectiveness of how key strategic risks are being managed
  • it needs to ensure that fit and proper person checks are fully completed

Areas where the trust should improve include:

  • reviewing its 70% compliance target for mandatory training
  • the organisation should continue to prioritise action to reduce the levels of bullying and harassment reported at the trust
  • the trust should make sure the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian has the necessary resources to carry out the role effectively

Managers at all levels at the trust had the right skills and abilities to run a service providing high-quality sustainable care. The trust board and senior leadership team had the appropriate range of skills, knowledge and experience to perform their role.

Leaders understood the challenges and priorities in their service. Managers were committed to retain staff and invested in clinical education to develop their team. All staff were provided with training and support to fulfil the obligations of their roles. The trust did not always follow its own process to make the robust assessments required by the fit and proper persons requirement for directors (FPPR).

The trust had a vision for what it wanted to achieve and staff applied the trust values in their everyday work.

Deputy Chief Inspector of Hospitals, Nigel Acheson, said:

“I am impressed at the continued improvements that have been made at Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, its overall rating has gone up from, Requires Improvement to Good.

“I was particularly impressed that the trust is committed to improving services by promoting training, research and innovation and learning from when things went well and when they went wrong.”

You can read the report in full when it is published on CQC’s website.


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Last updated:
22 February 2019

Notes to editors

The trust has a total of 428 inpatient beds, 57-day care beds and 23 inpatient wards, as well as approximately 289 outpatient clinics per week, across two main hospital sites and one outpatient and diagnostic site. It employs approximately 3,688 staff. In 2017/18, The Royal Brompton and Harefield saw 38,277 patients - more than previous year. As a specialist trust, Royal Brompton & Harefield takes referrals from all over the country and does not have a local population in the traditional sense.

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.