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Urgent discussions after fresh safety concerns raised at Shrewsbury and Telford hospitals

By Lisa O'Brien | Shrewsbury | Health | Published: | Last Updated:

Urgent discussions are taking place between NHS bosses after a health watchdog identified further concerns at Shropshire's major hospitals.

The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), which runs Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Telford's Princess Royal Hospital, was placed into special measures in 2018.

Inspectors from the Care Quality Commission visited the hospitals again last month and identified "new and ongoing concerns around patient safety" on the medical wards.

NHS chiefs are now in talks about finding a way forward for the trust that will ensure the safety of patients using its services.

It comes after it was revealed that a criminal investigation has been launched in relation to maternity services at the trust.

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Heidi Smoult, CQC’s deputy chief inspector of hospitals, said: “In the last two years we have imposed conditions on the trust’s registration on five occasions and issued three warning notices.

"The trust is in special measures and subject to close monitoring.

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“At our most recent focused inspection in June, we identified some new and ongoing concerns around patient safety on the medical wards which led to enforcement action against the trust.

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"Urgent discussions are taking place with NHS England and Improvement about the way forward for this trust that will ensure the safety of patients using its services.

"We will report on the full findings of our inspection and action we take taken as soon as the legal process allows.”

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The CQC says no section 31 notice has been published following the latest inspection and any warning notices or enforcement actions will be published as soon as legal restrictions allow.

SaTH says it has taken the feedback seriously, and although improvements have been made, there is more to be done.

Maggie Bayley, interim chief nurse at SaTH, said: “We take the feedback from the CQC extremely seriously and we are acting urgently to improve all aspects of the care highlighted by them.

“We have made some improvements in recent months, but it is clear that more has to be done to implement sustained change and to ensure we speed up our rate of improvement. We are committed to doing this.

“We are focused on ensuring that our patients receive kind, compassionate and safe care.

“We’ve listened to what the CQC has said and getting things right for our patients is our top priority.”

The trust says improvements it has made include recruiting a mental health practitioner to work alongside ward teams; strengthening the process regarding the review of serious incidents and action plans, and developing and embedding a culture of ‘learning from incidents’ through the expansion of its patient safety team.

Lisa O'Brien

By Lisa O'Brien
Senior Reporter - @lisaobrien_Star

Senior reporter based at Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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