PERFORMANCE: Regulators have welcomed improvements in the quality of services provided by Royal Bournemouth and Christchurch Hospitals Foundation Trust.

The Care Quality Commission previously identified issues including gaps in basic nursing care, unsafe use of escalation beds, staff shortages and a lack of effective leadership, following an inspection of the trust’s Royal Bournemouth hospital site in October 2013.

A follow-up inspection has since found that the trust has now addressed many of the issues of concern.

Inspectors found that the trust had taken steps to boost staffing levels and increase support for junior doctors.

They also concluded that the appointment of clinical matrons and support for ward sisters to focus on supervision of staff on the wards now supported the delivery of safe and effective care.

The CQC had previously found that patients who had suffered a stroke did not always have fast enough access to urgent treatment on the specialist unit.

Since their follow up visit in August, they found the speed of access to the stroke unit had improved.

Security arrangements at the hospital’s accident and emergency department, which were previously found to make staff feel vulnerable from abuse, had since been bolstered.

Professor Sir Mike Richards, the chief inspector of hospitals, said: “I am very pleased to see that our latest inspection has found definite progress, which has led to a much better service for patients. 

“At the time, we said that the impact of poor care on patients outweighed the many positive comments we had received about the hospital.  

“It is now clear that the trust took our findings to heart, seeking external advice to help it improve leadership across all services, particularly in the A&E department and medical services, which we have now found to be much more responsive to the needs of patients.”

Trust chief executive Tony Spotswood said: “We have been engaging with staff and patients to develop, and begin to embed, a new set of values.

“Our staff say they feel better engaged, more supported and part of a learning culture.

“Together we are creating the right culture that promotes excellent care for every patient, every day, everywhere. We look forward to continuing this important work which is the foundation for all improvement.”