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First 'outstanding' independent hospital rated by CQC

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A hospital in Cambridge has become the first independent acute provider to be assessed as “outstanding” overall by the Care Quality Commission.

Following a visit in July, inspectors gave Nuffield Health Cambridge Hospital the top rating for being caring, responsive and well led, while finding it was “good” at providing safe and effective services.

In its report on the hospital published yesterday, the CQC noted its good system for incident reporting, investigation and feedback, its appropriate infection control procedures and consistently good standard of venous thromboembolism, falls and urinary catheter care assessment audits.

”Feedback about care and treatment at the hospital was consistently positive and people were at the heart of this service”

Mike Richards

The regulator found staffing levels were planned in line with capacity and that when agency workers were required, the same nurses were used to maintain continuity for the service and the children.

The hospital - which completed its new £30million building last year and includes services such as oncology, gynaecology, general surgery, and those for children and young people - was also praised for an average of 98% of patients being treated within 18 months of referral each month to its surgery services.

Staff were supported with learning and development to ensure they were competent in their role and appraisal rates were high - between 96% and 100% - said the report.

Inspectors highlighted the “overwhelmingly positive” feedback from patients about the care they received, which was described as “amazing” and “first class”.

Data provided by the hospital showed that in the past year 80% of the hospital’s patients were privately funded and the remaining 20% were funded by the NHS.

”This [rating] is a true testament to the dedication and commitment of our matron, nurses, consultants and all the staff at our hospital”

Maxine Estop

However, inspectors did say some improvements could be made, including ensuring all bank staff were up to date with basic or intermediate life support training.

They also noted oncology nurses did not work seven days a week, which meant patients being cared for on the ward during the weekend did not have access to specialist nursing.

CQC chief inspector of hospitals, Professor Sir Mike Richards, said: “Overall, Nuffield Health Cambridge Hospital provides an outstanding standard of care to the people who use its services and its management and staff should be proud of the work they do.

“Feedback about care and treatment at the hospital was consistently positive and people were at the heart of this service. We found a number of areas of outstanding practice.”

Nuffield Health Cambridge Hospital’s director, Maxine Estop, said: “This is the highest possible rating we could have achieved and I am incredibly proud of the whole team for the outstanding care we have been able to provide our patients since we opened last year.

“This is a true testament to the dedication and commitment of our matron, nurses, consultants and all the staff at our hospital. We are also particularly proud of the support we offer cancer patients through the Maggie’s Wallace charity onsite at the hospital.”

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