Statement on Heatherwood & Wexham Park NHS Foundation Trust

Theresa May reacted to the announcement that the health sector regulator Monitor has ordered Heatherwood and Wexham Park NHS Foundation Trust to draw up a recovery plan to deal with poor care and shortfalls in its A&E capacity, following the Care Quality Commission (CQC) decision to issue the Trust with a warning notice for breaching one of its essential standards.

Theresa issued the following statement:

I am very concerned to hear the outcome of the CQC’s unannounced inspection at Heatherwood and Wexham Park Hospitals in May. It is not acceptable that problems have been identified in so many aspects of the Trust’s work, including in areas that patients would consider to be basic requirements of a hospital, such as cleanliness and infection control. Some of the problems identified stem from structural problems going back many years, but some also relate to failures in basic standards of care for which there can be no excuse.

Now that the Trust has been placed in special measures, it is important that we see a clear plan to rectify these failings and to reassure patients and local residents. We need to see urgent improvements.

Despite these problems, it is important to state that the vast majority of the staff at Heatherwood and Wexham Park are dedicated public servants who care deeply about the health and wellbeing of patients.

This is further evidence of the value of transparency and honesty when it comes to addressing problems in the NHS. I am pleased that the Government has already announced a new regulatory model working under a new independent Chief Inspector of Hospitals, covering clinical standards, the safety of services and, crucially, whether patients are listened to and treated with dignity and respect.

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