Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Trust responds to CQC 'requires improvement' rating | Fieldfisher
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Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Trust responds to CQC 'requires improvement' rating

Jenny Urwin
In October this year, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) carried out an unannounced inspection of Urgent and Emergency Services, Surgery, and Medical care at University Hospital Aintree and Royal Liverpool University Hospital because of continuing concerns about the quality and safety of some services. The Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, was then rated as 'requires improvement'.

The Trust is responsible for University Hospital Aintree, Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Liverpool University Dental Hospital and Broadgreen Hospital – which provide a full range of acute services, including acute medicine, urgent and emergency care, acute frailty units, rehabilitation services, dental services and surgical services, to a population of approximately 630,000 people.

Because the CQC received back only limited assurance, it issued urgent conditions requiring the Trust to take urgent action.

Points of concern included lack of training of medical staff and insufficiently qualified staff in urgent and emergency services , putting patients at risk, and a failure to adhere to national guidelines in treating and documenting patients, particularly regarding the use systems and processes to safely prescribe, administer, record and store medicines and in administering pain relief.

Overall, there was  lack of leadership and strategy, with senior managers were not always visible in services. Risks were not always identified correctly with appropriate mitigations put in place.

In response, Sir David Dalton, Interim Chief Executive of Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“As a new senior leadership team, we accept the Care Quality Commission’s inspection findings and are working closely with them to respond to, and address, the issues identified in their report.

“The report is very clear that responsibility lies with the Trust’s senior management and ineffective systems and processes, which have not enabled staff to achieve the high-quality of care I know they are committed to delivering.

“We are proud that the inspectors repeatedly noted the kindness and compassion shown by our staff when caring for patients. In the short time I have been at the Trust I have been struck by the dedication and passion of our staff, who want to do their very best for our patients.

“Working together we have taken immediate action to ensure that patients are safe and cared for appropriately. Our improvement journey has already started with considerable work being undertaken across the Trust to implement the necessary changes to our ways of working to raise the standards of the quality of care.”

Sue Musson, Chair of Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“Ensuring our patients consistently receive high-quality and safe care is the Trust’s absolute priority. The Board is committed to ensuring that the Trust delivers to these high standards for all of our patients. We know that our frontline staff are working incredibly hard in very challenging circumstances, and it is great to see their commitment and compassion reflected in the report.

“By working together as a Trust and with our partners across Liverpool we can deliver the quality of healthcare the people and the communities we serve deserve.”

Find out more about NHS negligence claims.

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