The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has today released its latest report on United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT), which shows widespread improvements to services and leadership.
The report has been produced following CQC inspections in October 2021 at Lincoln County Hospital and Pilgrim Hospital Boston. It shows that the Trust has been rated as ‘Requires Improvement’ overall- the same rating it received following the last inspection in 2019, but with significant improvements across a range of areas.
The Trust’s ratings for being effective and well-led went up from ‘Requires Improvement’ to ‘Good’. The rating around safety and responsiveness remained as ‘Requires Improvement’ and the rating for caring remained as ‘Good’.
In the report, the CQC particularly applauded, ‘without exception, staff treated patients with compassion and kindness, respected their privacy and dignity, took account of their individual needs, and helped them understand their conditions. They provided emotional support to patients, families and carers,’ and ‘from every conversation the inspection teams had with trust staff it was clear that the patient was at the heart of their work.’
The ratings for medical care and children’s and young people’s services at Lincoln County Hospital improved from ‘Requires Improvement’ to ‘Good’. Children’s and young people’s services at Pilgrim Hospital, Boston went up from ‘Inadequate’ to ‘Good’. Urgent and emergency care services across the Trust went up from ‘Inadequate’ to ‘Requires Improvement’ and maternity services at Pilgrim hospital went up from ‘Requires improvement’ to ‘Good’.
ULHT Chief Executive Andrew Morgan said: “We are really pleased that the huge effort that everyone has put into providing and improving services, particularly over the past two years, has been recognised. The CQC has recognised the significant improvements we have made in the quality and safety of our services since the last inspection in 2019. They have commented that this was particularly impressive against the COVID backdrop. Positive comments were also made about the Trust having a strong cohesive team with collective leadership at Board level.
Whilst widespread improvements had been made, we acknowledge there are still concerns regarding access and flow in the urgent and emergency department at Lincoln County Hospital. People continued to experience delays in accessing the service and receiving care promptly. Waiting times from referral to treatment and arrangements to admit, treat and discharge patients were still below national standards.
We are determined to take this feedback and make further significant improvements across the Trust, for the benefit of our staff and patients.
I want to say a big thank you to all our staff and partners who have come together over the past few years to help us to improve our services for the people of Lincolnshire. There is still more to be done but we are heading in the right direction.”
Oliver Newbould, Director of Intensive Support & Director of Strategic Transformation for NHS England and NHS Improvement in the Midlands said:
“We have been working closely with the leadership team at United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust, so we appreciate the enormous efforts they have been making to deliver the improvements required at the Trust. It is pleasing therefore to see that the CQC have recognised the progress made, which is in spite of the many challenges faced by the NHS in last couple of years. We look forward to ULHT continuing their improvement journey in the coming years.”
The full report can be found on the CQC website.