Sussex

CQC: Eastbourne District General Hospital 'inadequate'

Eastbourne District General Hospital
Image caption East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust runs Eastbourne District General and Conquest hospitals

A Sussex hospital has been branded "inadequate" by the health watchdog.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) said it had particular concerns over outpatient records and surgical practices at the Eastbourne District General Hospital (EDGH)

CQC inspectors reported that safety and leadership was also inadequate.

The East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust said it was developing an action plan to tackle issues raised during September's inspection.

Lib Dem MP for Eastbourne Stephen Lloyd said the inadequate rating opened the possibility the trust may be taken into special measures.

Inspectors said caring was "largely good", however a staff survey in 2013 had found low staff morale and high levels of sickness, they reported.

They said: "We saw challenges with staffing in some areas. We saw poor management of medicines in a number of areas and practices that our clinical experts deemed unsafe."

'Inappropriate staff behaviour'

The CQC found many clinics were running without patient records and were using temporary sets of notes, while health records were "in a poor state of repair".

Inspectors praised clinical leadership in the intensive therapy unit (ITU) and infection control procedures, highlighting low levels of MRSA and C. difficile.

But, the watchdog said, the hospital must ensure the management of medicines is done in accordance with national guidelines.

"Inappropriate staff behaviour toward patients, relatives and staff" should also be identified and addressed, it said.

Trust chief executive Darren Grayson said: "We are incredibly disappointed to receive the inadequate rating from the CQC, although we welcome the feedback from their inspection.

"Improvements have already been made since they inspected last September.

"The reports reflect the journey we are on as an organisation and the immense changes we have made over recent years."

Mr Lloyd said: "Eastbourne deserves a properly-led, fully-functioning DGH. This CQC report has emphatically shown that we have neither at this time."

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