St George’s & Queen Mary's Hospital Trust In Special Measures

Trust responsible for one of the UK's largest teaching hospitals rated inadequate

Independent regulator the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has told St George's University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust that its services have deteriorated from 'good overall' in 2014 to 'inadequate' following its inspection in June this year.

Interim hospital trust chairman, Sir David Henshaw, who is part of a new leadership team, says on the trust's website,
“We have a new leadership team in place, and real progress has been made since June. However, as we’ve always said, there will be no quick fix to the problems we face.

“Many of these challenges are due to very poor Board and senior management decisions in the past, and a failure to tackle the big challenges head on. We owe it to our staff and patients to make St George’s better again, and the CQC’s report is a key part of this improvement journey.”

St George’s Chief Executive, Simon Mackenzie, discusses CQC report (1 November 2016)

It was not all bad news; the trust was rated outstanding for kidney patient survival rate and kidney transplants, and for maternity and gynaecology services.

The trust comprises St George's and Queen Mary's hospitals. It serves 1.3 million people and employs approximately 9000 staff.

Summary of Care Quality Commission's view:

* St George's University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust rated inadequate overall
* Both St George's Hospital and Queen Mary's Hospital, which provides adult rehabilitation services, rated as requiring improvement
* Poor maintenance of several of St George's buildings, including operating theatres, were not fit for purpose
* Staff did not always follow infection control procedures
* Wards for children and young people with mental health issues had not been fully safety checked
* Insufficient mental health assessment capacity
* About half of the staff working with children and young people had not completed level three safeguarding training required for everyone working with children
* A&E department too small for the number of patients it dealt with and patients' dignity was compromised
* The trust was rated as good for caring
* The trust was rated as outstanding for kidney patient survival rate and kidney transplants
* The trust was also rated as outstanding for maternity and gynaecology services

The trust must provide safe and fit premises at St George's hospital, obtain consent under the Mental Capacity Act, demonstrate good governance and comply with the fit and proper person requirements in line with conditions set out in the Warning Notice

Local London Assembly Member, Leonie Cooper AM, said, “Patients deserve better than what we’ve seen in this report. Many of those who are treated in hospital are very vulnerable, so it's vital that services and facilities are fit for purpose.

“Whilst it’s clear that there are some serious management issues to be addressed, there’s little doubt that years of government underfunding and unnecessary restructuring have also played their part. Chronic underfunding can really take its toll when it comes to retaining a strong workforce able to deliver decent patient services and it's little wonder that we've seen such a rapid decline at the Trust in the last two years. Unless the government reduces pressure on health budgets, crises like the one we see here will only escalate.”

November 1 2016