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Provider: University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust Good

We are carrying out checks on locations registered by this provider. We will publish the reports when our checks are complete.


Inspection carried out on 8 October to 29 November 2018

During a routine inspection

Our rating of the trust stayed the same. We rated it as good because:

  • We rated safe, effective, caring and responsive as good and well led as outstanding.
  • We rated nine of the core services we inspected at this inspection good overall and eight as requires improvement.

CQC inspections of services

Service reports published 13 February 2019
Inspection carried out on 8 October to 29 November 2018 During an inspection of Community health services for children, young people and families Download report PDF (opens in a new tab)Download report PDF (opens in a new tab)
Inspection carried out on 8 October to 29 November 2018 During an inspection of Community end of life care Download report PDF (opens in a new tab)Download report PDF (opens in a new tab)
Inspection carried out on 27 - 30 January 2015

During a routine inspection

University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust is large teaching hospital with a reputation for quality of care, information technology, clinical training and research. It provides care from the Queen Elizabeth Medical Centre which is a new hospital on the site of the original. At the time of our inspection some wards in the old Queen Elizabeth hospital building were open. The trust also provides sexual health services from a number of locations across Birmingham.

The new Queen Elizabeth Medical Centre opened in June 2010 and was constructed under the public sector private finance initiative.

The Trust provides direct clinical services to over 900,000 patients every year, serving a regional, national and international population. It is a level 1 trauma centre, and is a regional centre for cancer, trauma, renal dialysis, burns and plastics; and provides a series of highly specialist cardiac, liver, oncology and neurosurgery services to patients from across the UK.

We inspected this service in January 2015 as part of the comprehensive inspection programme.

We visited the trust on 28, 29 and 30 January 2015 as part of our announced inspection. We also visited unannounced to the trust until Friday 13 February. This included visits to critical care and Medical Care services.

We inspected all core services provided by the trust (note the trust does not provide maternity nor children’s services). We also inspected sexual health services under our community services methodology.

We saw that Leadership of services at the trust was outstanding at both a local and an executive level.

Overall we saw that services were caring and responsive to patient’s needs. We saw services that were effective.

We saw a number of areas that required improvement for them to be assessed as safe.

Overall we have rated this trust as Good. We saw a number of areas that we rated as outstanding in the services they provided.

Our key findings were as follows:

  • Services in the trust had strong clinical and managerial leadership at many levels.

    • Staff were highly engaged with the trust and felt valued. This gave them a strong sense of purpose during their clinical interactions with patients.
    • A culture of local and national audit and analysis was encouraged. This led to change and improvements in practice and care.
    • The trust did not have a safeguarding children’s lead at the time of our inspection.

We saw several areas of outstanding practice including:

  • We saw that the trust had robust governance processes.
  • We saw a powerful culture of innovation which encouraged staff to take opportunities to enhance the services provided by the trust.
  • We saw strong recruitment practices, where teams were encouraged to over recruit when good candidates presented at interview to secure capable individuals when they were available
  • We saw examples of where the trust had engaged with patients over previous problems and changed practice; such as complementary hearing aid boxes and sleep masks and ear plugs provide to all inpatients.
  • We considered the use of theatre technicians to support trauma teams in the Emergency Department as an example of outstanding practice and indicative of the trust wide multidisciplinary working. The practice provided support to the duty anaesthetist for more complex patients and allowed learning between disciplines and departments.
  • The Emergency Department clinical quality and safety newsletter enabled safety and governance messages to be passed to staff in the department in one concise document which provided a summary of relevant points and hyperlinks to original documents or sources of information. The system reduced the number of emails to staff freeing up time.

However, there were also areas of poor practice where the trust needs to make improvements.

Importantly, the trust must:

  • Improve infection control and hygiene, particularly in Urgent and Emergency Care services.
  • Investigate and resolve the long waiting times in outpatient services.
  • Ensure sufficient consultation time is available for patients with complex conditions
  • Review progress on its 31 day cancer target, especially where radiotherapy is part of the pathway.
  • Ensure appointment to the Children’s safeguarding lead post is made.

Professor Sir Mike Richards

Chief Inspector of Hospitals

Use of resources

These reports look at how NHS hospital trusts use resources, and give recommendations for improvement where needed. They are based on assessments carried out by NHS Improvement, alongside scheduled inspections led by CQC. We’re currently piloting how we work together to confirm the findings of these assessments and present the reports and ratings alongside our other inspection information. The Use of Resources reports include a ‘shadow’ (indicative) rating for the trust’s use of resources.

Intelligent Monitoring

We use our system of intelligent monitoring of indicators to direct our resources to where they are most needed. Our analysts have developed this monitoring to give our inspectors a clear picture of the areas of care that need to be followed up.

Together with local information from partners and the public, this monitoring helps us to decide when, where and what to inspect.