Resort private hospital told to improve

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Blackpool’s private hospital, which received around £9.1 million of NHS cash last year, has been given a list of things to improve following an inspection.

Spire, in St Walburgas Road, had its surgery department examined by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), with the health watchdog publishing its report recently.

It did not re-rate the hospital but noted a number of areas ‘that required improvement’. Spire’s overall rating remained at ‘requires improvement’, as did three out of five key areas.

Two others were kept as ‘good’.

Hospital director Barbara Cummings said the hospital was re-inspected in a ‘small number of specific areas’.

She said: “In line with standard CQC protocol, no new ratings are applied following such a focussed inspection and therefore the rating of the hospital given in 2016 will not be altered.

“During the re-inspection, the CQC identified a number of areas in the hospital as having good practice including cleanliness, safety monitoring, staffing numbers, and processes to manage medical emergencies and responding to patient risks.

“Ensuring full completion of documentation was identified as an area that needed improvement.

“These areas have now been addressed by the hospital. Spire Fylde Coast has improved its compliance with national standards substantially since the CQC’s full inspection in 2016.

“We strive to provide consistent, high-quality services to every patient that we see and this is what everyone in the hospital is focused on and determined to achieve.”

Spire has 26 rooms, 11 day care beds, three theatres, 10 consulting rooms, physiotherapy, medical imaging, and outpatient and diagnostics facilities.

The CQC said paperwork wasn’t filled in properly in theatre three, not all theatre records were completed, and the World Health Organisation surgical safety checklists also not completed for all patients.

Evidence of the surgical first assistant’s qualification and competence wasn’t available on site, and the necessary employment checks had not been carried out for all the staff working in surgery.

Expiry dates were not on all medicines, with the CQC saying: “Therefore there was no assurance these medicines were within their expiry date.”

A log of all surgery assistants was kept but some information was not present.