The Care Quality Commission has condemned a trust which has failed to improve after a period of continuing poor performance.
Worcestershire Acute Hospitals Trust was rated inadequate back in December 2015, but has failed to make satisfactory improvements in order to be removed from special measures.
The trust had particularly attracted the attention of the media when a patient died in the corridors at one of its hospitals.
Having reported on the trust, the CQC found that there had been a litany of failings in procedure.
In fact, emergency care at the trust has even declined since the trust was placed in special measures eighteen months ago.
It is already known that the culture at the trust has been somewhat wanting, with an investigation finding that patients being kept in corridors, medication errors and poor infection control were all rife at the trust.
And the Care Quality Commission ultimately recommended that the trust be retained in special measures for at least three more months in order to enable the new executive team to push through “urgent improvements”.
Professor Sir Mike Richards, the chief inspector of hospitals, noted that the trust “will require continued support for the foreseeable future”.
Richards went on to express the view of the Care Quality Commission on the trust.
“This is extremely concerning, both in terms of the quality of care that people can expect from the trust, and for what it says about the trust’s ability to improve. This situation must not be allowed to continue and we are considering, along with partner agencies, the best option available to improve services rapidly for the local population.”
And Richards also floated the idea that other NHS organisations in the area should be more involved in helping the trust “address the problems the trust cannot deal with on its own”.
In response to the criticisms, trust chief executive Michelle McKay indicated her disappointment at the verdict, but accepted that it was fair.
“We want all our patients to get the best care possible and regret that this isn’t currently always happening, but we’re determined to put things right,” McKay stated.
But McKay also pointed to improvements in some services, such as maternity and children’s, since the last inspection.
Worcestershire Royal Hospital had previously taken on some of these services in February in an attempt to rectify the situation.
Nonetheless, the level of caring was rated good at the trust, indicating that patients are at least receiving adequate levels of care.