'Inadequate' rating for independent Fawkham Manor Hospital
A hospital where inspectors saw the wrong patient being wheeled into an operating theatre has been rated inadequate by the health watchdog.
The independent BMI Fawkham Manor Hospital in Lonfield near Dartford treats private and NHS patients.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) said: "Patients were at risk of harm, because the hospital was not following the correct safety systems and processes."
BMI Healthcare Ltd said it was "disappointed" with the report.
"Patient care and safety is our absolute priority, and we will not accept practices that fall short of the expectations that we - and our patients - have of the hospital," the firm said.
"Whilst we are disappointed with the CQC's findings, we are pleased that the CQC also saw evidence of the commitment of our staff and the compassionate care they deliver to patients."
Elizabeth Kershaw, who led the CQC team inspecting the hospital, said: "While we were there we observed the wrong patient being taken in to theatre.
"We were appalled."
She said lessons had not been learned after a patient had been taken to theatre with the wrong wristband on a previous occasion.
Not all theatre staff were washing their hands to the expected standard and some of the equipment was dusty and rusty. Inspectors also saw blood stains on some equipment.
BMI Healthcare Ltd said it was strengthening the hospital's leadership team, but the CQC said it was "not convinced yet that the changes [were] fully embedded".
Inspectors are due to revisit the hospital within six months and there is a "possibility" it could be put in special measures if issues raised by the CQC inspectors are not addressed.