PERFORMANCE: The Care Quality Commission has launched a “full investigation” of the acute trust focussing on emergency care, elective care and maternity.

The regulator said it had “serious concerns” about Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals Trust and said it will now look “in detail at whether it was protecting people against the risk of unsafe care”.

Last April the CQC put eight conditions on the trust’s registration.

A CQC spokesman said: “Since then, CQC inspectors have made unannounced visits to the trust, resulting in urgent demands for improvement, and have carried out reviews into the maternity and A&E services. The review of A&E services found problems with how the department is organised are affecting care, resulting in delays to patients being seen and being treated.”

CQC’s regional director for London Colin Hough added: “We’ve been monitoring this trust very closely, making frequent unannounced visits, talking to patients and staff - and we keep finding problems. Some progress has been made, but not enough. We’re concerned both about the trust’s performance and its ability to deliver the scale of the improvements needed.

“CQC has now launched a full investigation into whether Barking Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust has the right systems in place to protect people and make sure they receive safe care. We’ll also be looking at the bigger picture – whether the trust has the support it needs to make improvements.

“We warned the trust that we would take action if we were not confident that all necessary steps were taken to ensure people receive safe care. This investigation will now determine what action is needed.”