CQC publishes report into urgent and emergency care

Date: 25 February 2021

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The Care Quality Commission has today published a report following an unannounced inspection of the Emergency Department at Medway Maritime Hospital on 14 December 2020.

The report highlights where improvements are needed, while acknowledging a number of positive observations about the care staff provide for patients needing urgent and emergency care.

Following feedback from the visit, Medway NHS Foundation Trust immediately took steps to address concerns raised, including measures to reduce waiting times, and to ensure patients did not deteriorate within the department.

In the report inspectors commended the way staff ensured there were separate zones for patients with COVID-19, those with symptoms but without a positive test result, and those who did not have COVID-19 symptoms. They also said staff had a good understanding of appropriate PPE, and infection prevention measures, and noted that the department was clean.

Chief Executive James Devine said: "We have taken a number of steps since the CQC’s visit to address the findings from their inspection, including taking immediate action to improve the way we manage pressures within our Emergency Department. We have implemented an improvement plan to ensure we are consistently providing safe, high quality patient care, which is already making a positive difference to patients’ care.

"Actions we have put in place include working with health partners to reduce the number of patients waiting in ambulances, introducing processes to quickly identify and prioritise patients who deteriorate in ambulances, and opening more beds so that patients don’t wait so long to be admitted."

Actions since the inspection include:

  • Working with health partners on a collaborative approach to managing demand in our Emergency Department, leading to a reduction in the number of patients waiting in ambulances for longer than 60 minutes.
  • Putting processes in place to quickly identify patients who are deteriorating in ambulances so they can be prioritised.
  • Increasing reviews of patients waiting to be admitted resulting in greatly reduced waiting times.
  • Opening an additional 20 beds in order to cope with the demand.
  • Launching a nationally-recognised Patient First programme to enhance safe care in the Emergency Department.
  • Instigating a multi-agency approach to increase timely discharge for patients who do not need to be in the hospital.
  • Introducing a tailored development programme to improve leadership and culture.
  • Summary:

    The Care Quality Commission has today published a report following an unannounced inspection of the Emergency Department at Medway Maritime Hospital on 14 December 2020.