There are many factors that NHS Trusts are evaluated on. It is understandable that finances are necessary, but for most people, NHS Trusts must keep people safe and provide a level of care for patients. If a Trust doesn’t provide this, they fail in their duties and improvement is needed.
This is the scenario facing the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital Trust, SATH, who have been warned yet again by the Care Quality Commission. There are concerns about the safety of the services provided by the Trust.
In November of 2018, the Trust received an “inadequate” rating from the CQC, and after an inspection in April, the Trust has received a Section 31 notice.
Trust must learn from multiple warnings
In eight months, the Trust has received four warnings, with two of these warnings classed as formal Section 31 notices. The most recent warning relates to the emergency department and how paediatric patients are supported.
The Medical Director for SATAH, Edwin Borman, released a statement saying; “We were not able to see all of our patients in 15 minutes, in line with national performance targets, and some of our patients left before we could start treatment. We have alerted our GP colleagues of any children who left our EDs before treatment, which was the main area of concern for the CQC.”
The West Midlands Quality Review Service has stated the emergency department doesn’t have an adequate supply of employees trained in paediatric resuscitation.
This finding was made public in a report published in December of last year.
The report stated; “Paediatric staff were only available 9am to 10pm Monday to Friday and 12 noon to 10pm on Saturdays and Sundays. A registered healthcare professional with level one Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health competences was not always available at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital after 10pm when paediatric staff were not on site.”
Medical emergencies occur at all hours of the day and night
As the review rightly pointed out, any children requiring resuscitation after 10 pm may not receive the support they need. While it is essential to look at numbers when it comes to medical staff, the volume of employees in place isn’t everything. It is critical that qualified medical professionals who can take responsibility when specific issues arise are in place; otherwise, patients are at risk.
At Atlantis Medical, we know the importance of placing the right people into specific roles. We don’t see candidates and professionals as a number; we value their skills and experience. This attention to detail ensures we can provide NHS Trusts with the support they require, no matter what their current staffing issue is.
The Deputy Chief Inspector at CQC, Amanda Stanford, spoke to the media, saying; “CQC inspected the maternity and ED services at Shrewsbury and Telford Hospitals Trust in April. As a result we took further urgent action with regard to ED care, including paediatrics. We are unable to give further details at this time but will report on our findings shortly. All CQC’s action is open to appeal. We are monitoring the trust closely and liaising with NHSI and NHSE.”