PERFORMANCE: In February the foundation trust was non-compliant with four national patient safety alerts past the deadline for their completion, new data shows.

Figures extracted from the NHS central alerting system show that on 17 February UHMB had still not completed work on alerts about the use of intravenous gentamicin for neonates, lithium therapy, administration of insulin, and reducing treatment dose errors with low molecular weight heparins. However, most were not more than two months overdue.

The alert that had been longest outstanding past its due date was titled “safer administration of insulin”, which had a completion deadline of 16 December 2010.

Only three NHS organisations in the North West were non-compliant with a higher number of patient safety alerts than UHMB: Aintree University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, and St Helens and Knowsley Hospitals NHS Trust.

There were three other organisations in the region that had the same number of outstanding alerts: NHS Salford, Clatterbridge Centre for Oncology NHS Foundation Trust, and University Hospital of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust.

In total, there were 74 instances of outstanding alerts in the region, among 29 organisations.

The alerts are issued by the National Patient Safety Agency, informing NHS staff of actions to help address avoidable problems which have repeatedly caused harm or death. Before January, data on non-compliance was not routinely made public. The February figures are only the second set that have been published by the NPSA.