CQC inspection report published

Emergency Department (ED) at Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH) upgraded from ‘inadequate’ to ‘requires improvement’ by Care Quality Commission (CQC)

Exterior of the front of Princess Royal University Hospital
  • ED at PRUH praised by CQC for delivering ‘a number of improvements’ since inspection in November 2019.
  • Inspection in June 2021 found that leadership has been strengthened, and that staff wellbeing is now clearly a priority.
  • CQC say that further improvements are needed to improve care for ED patients at PRUH.

The Emergency Department (ED) at Princess Royal University Hospital (PRUH) – part of King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust - has had its rating upgraded from ‘inadequate’ to ‘requires improvement’ by the CQC following an inspection in June this year.

The ED at PRUH – which on average treats 380 patients every day – was rated ‘inadequate’ by the CQC after a focussed inspection in November 2019. However, the CQC said a number of improvements had been put in place since then.

As a result, the ED at PRUH is now rated ‘requires improvement’ for being safe, effective, well-led and responsive – and ‘good’ for caring. This represents an improvement on the CQC’s previous inspection in November 2019, when the ED at PRUH was rated ‘inadequate’ for being safe, responsive and well-led – and ‘requires improvement’ for being effective and caring.

During their recent inspection, the CQC found that the ED at PRUH had the right number and mix of skilled staff, and that infection control measures were being followed.

The inspection team also found that steps had been taken to improve the facilities in which patients with mental health needs were seen and treated. They also said that the ED at PRUH worked well with other organisations to protect patients from abuse.

The CQC also said that staff treated patients with compassion and kindness, and that managers within the service were visible and approachable.

Professor Clive Kay, Chief Executive of King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, of which the PRUH is part, said:

“The CQC’s inspection report confirms that the improvements staff at PRUH have put in place are delivering benefits for patients, and the communities we serve. This is a positive step forward.”
“I am pleased for PRUH ED staff, and the hospital’s leadership team, who have worked hard to embed positive changes within the department, at the same time as managing the challenges associated with COVID-19.”

“However, we mustn’t be complacent, and it is clear that further improvements are needed – and I am confident everyone is committed to making the ED at PRUH even better for patients, and staff.”
The CQC also found that, despite the efforts of staff, the physical design of the waiting area for the ED at PRUH made crowding more likely. A new, re-designed waiting area to support better patient flow and social distancing is due to open in September.

The inspection team also found that early warning scores for paediatric patients attending the ED were not always recorded. Since the inspection, staff have been reminded about the importance of accurate and timely record keeping, and additional training is also being provided to help staff identify children at risk of deterioration.

You can view the CQC’s full inspection report here (from Wednesday, 11 August) - Princess Royal University Hospital (cqc.org.uk).