A major inspection of community-based health services and acute hospital care has rated services provided by the newly formed South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), rated community-based health services as ‘outstanding’ and acute hospital care as ‘good’.
Overall, the Trust was rated ‘good’ with many areas of outstanding practice including its end of life care services at St Benedict’s Hospice in Ryhope and community sexual health services.
The CQC also praised several areas of outstanding practice across all parts of the new organisation including:
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·a culture of openness and inclusivity promoted by the leadership team with staff encouraged to value and respect diversity;
·improvements delivered in the quality of care through the use of technology and the Trust’s Global Digital Exemplar programme;
·acute hospital services;
·and community services.
Inspectors praised the board of directors for creating a ‘sense of common purpose based on shared values’ and a positive culture that supported and valued staff, stating ‘this had been achieved whilst going through a merger which was a significant achievement’.
Trust Chief Executive Ken Bremner MBE said: “I am immensely proud of what we have achieved in such a short space of time since we became one organisation. This CQC result is testament to our staff and their unwavering resolve to put patient care at the absolute heart of everything we do, every single day.
“Despite lots of upheaval and change, not to mention exceptionally busy times operationally for our services, staff in all parts of the Trust have kept their focus on what matters most – delivering exceptional care and compassion to the communities we serve. Nowhere has this been more evident than in recent months as our teams have rallied together in response to COVID-19.”
Trust chairman John Anderson CBE added: “To achieve a ‘good’ rating following our first comprehensive CQC inspection as one Trust really is a fantastic achievement for our staff and excellent news for the people of South Tyneside and Sunderland.”