Stafford hospital 'must improve' according to latest CQC report

By Megan Archer | Stafford | News | Published:

County Hospital in Stafford has been told it must improve in almost all areas by a Government watchdog.

Stafford County Hospital

The hospital was inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) last year and now the report has been published which rates it as ‘requires improvement’ in five out of six areas.

Inspectors found that risks within the emergency department were not always identified, and not all staff had completed mandatory training.

Victoria Watkins, head of hospitals inspection, led the unannounced inspection, and said: “There was a lack of effective monitoring of patient outcomes.

“Staff did not always assess and monitored patients regularly to see if they were in pain. Staff did not always understand their roles and responsibilities under the Mental Capacity Act 2005. They did not always know how to support patients experiencing mental ill health and those who lacked the capacity to make decisions about their care.”

Inspectors found that the level of care was overall ‘good’ – and rated it that way. Staff were able to provide emotional support to patients to minimise their distress and cared for them with compassion.

However the rating of urgent and emergency services went down, and bosses were told it required improvement. This was because not all staff had completed required training, and there was not enough of all suitable equipment for resuscitation of children.

There was also lack of effective monitoring of care and treatment.

Ms Watkins said that leaders at the hospital did have the ‘integrity, skills and abilities’ to run the service, and that staff felt respected, supported and valued.


The Trust that runs County Hospital, Universities Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust, received a requires improvement rating overall for both County and Royal Stoke hospitals.

Tracy Bullock, chief executive the Trust said: "Having been a new CEO at the time of the inspection, I am pleased to say that in the nine months since the CQC visits first took place significant improvements have been made across both County and Royal Stoke University hospitals.

"This is most notable within the emergency department where we have recruited 27 additional nurses, 15 additional doctors, increased the size of the department and put a strengthened process in place to triage our patients to the right place for their care in a timely way.

"It’s good to see that the CQC inspectors have recognised some of the outstanding practice across our hospitals particularly within our children’s and young people’s services which offer tremendous care to children across Staffordshire and beyond.

"As a team we are already looking forward to the next inspection as we are confident that the CQC will be assured that not only have we made good progress in the areas they identified as requiring improvement, we have also continued to build on our many strengths with a view to providing the best possible services for our patients."

Megan Archer

By Megan Archer
Chief Reporter - @MeganA_Star

Chief Reporter with the Express & Star. Give me a call on 01902 319363 or email


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