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Chief Inspector of Hospitals reports on progress at two hospital trusts

28 April 2016
East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust, Medway NHS Foundation Trust
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England's Chief Inspector of Hospitals has written to the Secretary of State for Health to make recommendations on the next steps for two hospital trusts – Medway NHS Foundation Trust and Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust, both of which have been in special measures for more than 18 months.

Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust has failed to make sufficient progress overall and so, in his letter, Sir Mike has informed the Secretary of State that a new approach is needed. He has agreed to a proposal from NHS Improvement to establish a long-term partnership between Ipswich Hospital NHS and Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust.

Commenting on this, Professor Sir Mike Richards said:

"We have consistently found poor and unsafe practices which place patients at risk of harm at this trust. There have not been enough signs of improvement for me to recommend a further extension to special measures. I do not have confidence in the ability of the trust's current board to address the issues I have highlighted, though I do recognise that the chief executive has only been in post a short time. I believe a more radical solution is required to ensure the delivery of safe care at Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust."

Medway NHS Foundation Trust has made progress under a new chief executive and with strong support from Guys and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust. Sir Mike has therefore recommended a further extension to special measures for six months, with a view to reinspecting in the autumn.

Inspections have taken place at both trusts in the last month and full reports on the inspectors' findings will be published by CQC shortly.

Last updated:
29 May 2017