Improvements noted in latest CQC reports

Posted by: Jamie Sharp - Posted on:

Today the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has published its latest reports into maternity services and urgent and emergency care service at the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (UHL), noting improvements in both services and the compassion of staff.

The CQC carried out a two-day, unannounced inspection of maternity services at the Leicester Royal Infirmary and the Leicester General Hospital in January 2024. They also carried out an unannounced inspection of urgent and emergency care services. The inspections were follow-ups to those conducted in 2023 and 2022 and looked specifically at the ‘safe’ and ‘well-led’ domains.

There has been a move from an Inadequate rating for safe in our maternity services to Requires Improvement, and from Requires Improvement to Good for the well-led rating in our urgent and emergency care service. Overall, the rating for both services remains as Requires Improvement.

Commenting on the findings in relation to maternity services, UHL’s Chief Nurse, Julie Hogg, said: “We have come a long way on our improvement journey since the 2023 inspection and further still from the latest inspection in January. In particular, we have made huge progress with staffing, one of the CQC’s key concerns, welcoming 29 midwives to the service since January 2024 and with 51 more due to start before November. Since the autumn we have also recruited three new consultant obstetricians alongside the nine speciality doctors.

“With additional safety measures in place to protect babies in our care, a new maternity theatre and day case assessment unit set to open this summer at the Leicester General Hospital, and investment in technology to improve care during induction, many aspects of our improvement plans are already delivering positive results. We could not have achieved this without the hard work and dedication of colleagues across the services and it is good to see their contribution highlighted in the reports.

“We fully acknowledge we have much more to do to ensure our services are of the standard we want them to be and that our patients have a right to expect. We continue to seek and act on feedback, and I encourage anyone with concerns about their care to speak to us – we promise to listen to you and take your concerns seriously.”

There has also been progress in improving urgent and emergency care since the January inspection. Julie added: “It is encouraging to note the CQC’s recognition for the care and compassion of colleagues in our urgent and emergency care service and their focus on patient’s needs, supported by a strong and committed departmental leadership team with credible vision and plans for improvement.

“Over the last 12 months, we’ve seen several improvements including in our monthly 4-hour wait targets, a reduction in ambulance handover times, and the number of discharges we were able to make to free up capacity to care for those waiting.

“However, the significant demand for urgent and emergency care means waiting times continue to be an issue and we know some people experience a long wait in our Emergency Department. I apologise to anyone affected by this.

“Together with our partners, we are focused on improving urgent and emergency care services to meet the needs of local people.”

You can read the full reports on maternity services and urgent and emergency care on the CQC website, when they are published later today. 

If you have feedback to share about any of our services, you can contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service: 

Freephone: 0808 178 8337 

Email: [email protected]