Praise for Ashford and St Peter's hospitals

Ashford Hospital Image copyright Ashford and St Peter's Hospital Trust
Image caption The trust runs Ashford Hospital and St Peter's Hospital in Chertsey

A hospital trust which said it was under "severe pressure" has been praised by the health watchdog.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) found some "outstanding practice" at Ashford and St Peter's Hospitals NHS Foundation Hospital Trust, in Surrey.

Inspectors praised older people's assessments and the intensive care electronic patient record system.

In January, the trust cancelled most outpatient appointments, due to a high number of emergency patients.

Professor Mike Richards, the CQC's chief inspector of hospitals, said: "When we inspected the hospitals run by Ashford and St Peter's Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, much of what we saw was good.

"It was clear staff took great pride in their work. We saw some good examples of collaborative working to improve the treatment and care people received."

'Robust plans'

The inspectors said the trust needed to make improvements in the storage of medicines and had some concerns about staffing levels.

The report said: "All departments must have sufficient numbers of suitably qualified, skilled and experienced nursing staff on the units and the outreach team to safeguard the health, safety and welfare of patients at all times."

Suzanne Rankin, Ashford and St. Peter's chief executive said: "Our primary concern is always to provide the best possible services for patients that we can and this report bears out some of the excellent work we are doing to improve patient care and experience.

"We also recognise that there are some areas for improvement and we are already well under way in putting in place robust action plans to address these."

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