London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust remains requires improvement

Page last updated: 20 May 2022

London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust remains rated as requires improvement by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) following an inspection in February and March.

The trust runs several hospitals and community services across north west London and was inspected to assess whether it was meeting the standards of care people have a right to expect.

The unannounced inspection looked at medical care and surgery provided at Northwick Park Hospital and Ealing Hospital. It also assessed how well-led the trust is overall, due to the link between good leadership and the quality of care people receive. 

As well as being requires improvement overall following the inspection, the trust was rated requires improvement for being safe, effective, responsive to people’s needs and well-led. It was rated good for being caring.

Nicola Wise, head of hospital inspection at CQC, said:

“Although the rating of the trust remained the same, we did find improvements since the previous inspection. When considering the additional challenges posed by Covid-19, the trust is making encouraging progress.

“We identified several areas it must improve on to ensure patients consistently receive safe care and treatment that meets their needs, including ensuring all services are adequately staffed and providing adequate mental health provision.

“However, good work included how the trust maintained its cancer services throughout the pandemic and how teams collaborated in surgery at Ealing Park Hospital.

“We have told the trust what it must do to comply with its legal obligations and keep people safe and will monitor its progress to ensure continued improvement.”

The inspection found:

  • Medical care at Ealing Hospital and Northwick Park Hospital was rated requires improvement.
  • There were not always enough staff to keep patients safe.
  • Mandatory training in resuscitation was below the national standard and out of date resuscitation equipment hadn’t been removed securely.
  • A lack of seamless provision between the trust and other mental health providers was putting patients at risk.
  • Patient records weren’t always stored securely.
  • All staff did not consistently receive feedback from incidents.
  • Some sharps bins had not been correctly maintained.
  • Although the trust provided cancer treatment, the lack of a local cancer strategy meant there was a risk that it didn’t align to others in the area to support people during and after their cancer treatment.
  • The current strategy for the trust needed updating.
  • The governance team was under-resourced.


  • The trust had improved its rating to good in eight areas across Ealing Hospital and Northwick Park Hospital.
  • Surgery at Ealing Hospital and Northwick Park Hospital met standards people have a right to expect, so was rated good.
  • Staff treated patients with compassion and kindness, and they respected their privacy and dignity.
  • Staff provided good care and treatment, made sure patients had enough to eat and drink and received pain relief when they needed it.
  • People’s individual needs were considered, and emotional support was offered to patients and their loved ones.
  • Key services were available seven days a week.
  • Managers monitored the effectiveness of the service and ensured staff were competent.
  • The inspection also found examples of outstanding practice in medical care at Ealing Hospital. This included collaborative and multi-disciplinary ways of working to improve patient outcomes.

Full details of the inspection are given in the report published on our website.

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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.