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Stories of improvement from eight independent hospitals

18 June 2019
  • Organisations we regulate,
  • Hospitals

Today we publish a report that explores how eight independent acute hospitals have been able to make significant improvements in the quality of care and improve their CQC rating on re-inspection.

Driving improvement: Case studies from eight independent hospitals draws on interviews with a range of staff from eight hospitals. Each has made positive changes to drive improvements for patients. In each case study we highlight how staff describe the journey of improvement as they experienced it.

Together their stories share some common themes. They show that one of the biggest aspects to supporting improvement across all hospitals was robust leadership. Another is meaningful engagement with staff.

Leaders became more visible. They made an effort to listen to staff and bring them into discussions about changes and improvements. Strengthened governance processes supported learning from incidents and complaints - helping to identify and address risks. Alongside this we heard how efforts were made to adopt a “whole hospital” approach. Staff in different departments worked more closely together. And they could see their part in the wider system.

In some cases, lessons learned as part of the improvement process were shared across hospitals in the same group. Corporate support provided extra people and finances to back up local teams. CQC inspection reports also helped hospitals to prioritise actions. This helped them make quality improvement a fundamental part of what they do.

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

"These case studies show just how important it is to have open, honest and visible leadership that engages and empowers staff across all departments to contribute to improving patient care. Real change does not happen overnight – the improvements made by each hospital are a testament to the effort and determination of the staff involved. I hope their stories will encourage and inspire other independent hospitals in their own improvement work and help drive up safety and quality across the sector."

David Hare, Chief Executive, Independent Healthcare Providers Network (IHPN), said:

"Providing safe, high quality care is the number one priority for independent hospitals. However as for all healthcare providers there is always room for improvement and we were delighted that so many IHPN members were able to contribute case studies to this report, which demonstrates the value of the CQC’s inspection programme and the efforts made by staff at all levels within the independent acute sector to learn and improve."

Last updated:
18 June 2019