• SATH receives fresh warning from CQC over safety concerns
  • Follows focussed inspection of emergency department last week
  • NHSE/I due to hold risk summit, HSJ understands

Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital Trust has received another warning from the Care Quality Commission over safety within its emergency departments.

The regulator undertook a focussed inspection of the trust’s emergency services last week. Following this, it wrote to the provider raising a number of safety concerns, HSJ has learned.

Several senior sources told HSJ some of the key concerns related to the trust’s paediatric emergency services, over which the CQC has already raised warnings.

In October 2018, the CQC told the trust  it needed to address concerns over the levels of paediatric staff in A&E. In April last year, SATH received a warning which highlighted particular concerns over the streaming of paediatric patients

Following an inspection in the summer of 2018, the CQC rated SATH “inadequate” overall, including in the safety domain, and for its urgent and emergency services. The trust has since received numerous further warnings over its emergency departments. 

A risk summit is due to be held this week, with the trust, regulators and system partners.

Heidi Smoult, the CQC’s deputy chief inspector of hospitals, said: “We have written to the trust to request evidence of the steps it is taking to ensure patients are safe and protected from risk. We will review the trusts response to determine whether the use of our enforcement powers is required.”

SATH chief executive Louise Barnett said: “We take the feedback from the CQC extremely seriously and we are acting urgently to improve the aspects of the care highlighted by them.

“We strive to give the best care possible to all of our patients, however the findings of the CQC show that we have not done this for all our patients.

“We have made some improvements in our emergency departments in recent months, but it is clear that more has to be done to implement change and ensure improvements become embedded and we are committed to doing this.”

The trust said it had made a number of improvements to its emergency departments, including an additional triage room at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, additional paediatric triage nurses, posting matrons to work at each A&E to oversee quality and safety, and increasing the number of health care assistants.