Hospital turns a corner
Friday 21st February 2014 @ 09:45 by Max Wieland
PROGRESS REPORT: Monitor says Tameside Hospital is heading in the right direction.

PROGRESS REPORT: Monitor says Tameside Hospital is heading in the right direction.


Tameside Hospital has received a glowing report from the NHS regulators in charge of its progress since it was placed into special measures last July.

It is the first update on the hospital by the inspection body Monitor since NHS medical director Sir Bruce Keogh’s hard-hitting review into high death rates at 14 different hospital trusts, including Tameside.

In a Special Measures update report, published on Friday, Tameside  Hospital is praised for meeting the national target to deliver 95 per cent of all care harm free.

The report also highlighted the fact that staff at the trust say that “communication with the Chief Executive has increased” and “there has been significant change… a positive one.”

The Ashton-based Hospital had 22 urgent or immediate actions it was ordered to take in the Keogh Action Plan.

By last month it had delivered five and is on track to deliver the other 17.

There was further approval for the fact that the number of patient falls has decreased by 85 per cent.

The report also acknowledged there are now an additional 32 full time nurses or nursing support staff.

But further progress is required in the trust’s emergency care pathway and in its acute medical unit, to ensure recent improvements are consolidated, states the report.

The report also adds: “The trust also needs to ensure that it continues to strengthen the supervision and training of junior doctors.”

Hospital chief executive Karen James, who replaced under fire predecessor Christine Green last summer following Sir Bruce Keogh’s damning report, was quick to praise staff in her response to the Monitor Report.

She said: “Following Keogh’s review last summer, we are now working to an integrated action plan which addresses actions highlighted by Keogh.

“At Tameside Hospital we are making exceptional progress with our improvement journey.

“I am extremely pleased with the level of dedication from all staff who have committed to implement changes at Tameside Hospital in order to improve and address the concerns raised during Keogh’s visit.”

Monitor’s new report also singled out the University Hospital of South Manchester (Wythenshawe Hospital) for praise following its partnership with Tameside.

Failing trusts were partnered with high-performing ones to receive expert advice and support.

The report said: “The trust has been partnered with University Hospital South Manchester which is providing senior clinical support to spread clinical best practice and help cultural change across the trust to take place.”

And it is that cultural change that new chief executive Karen James wants to continue.

“We are well on track with improvement actions highlighted in Keogh’s report and are moving on from the Keogh team’s follow-up review in December,” she said.

Chair of Healthwatch Tameside, former Ashton GP Dr Kailash Chand, OBE,  said: “The new administration led by Karen James has come in with a definitive plan and they are striving hard to deliver.

“I am delighted with the progress being made, and it seems that the hospital is now on track to make significant changes to enable it to provide better services to the population of Tameside and Glossop.

“The local GPs and clinical commissioning group led by Dr Alan Dow too have played their role to support the hospital to improve the health outcomes  in the hospital.”