Leaders at a private hospital in Harrogate have insisted improvements have been made after they were told its leadership and patient safety were 'inadequate'.
The Chief Inspector of hospitals across England rated BMI Healthcare-owned The Duchy Hospital, on Queen's Road, as inadequate in October last year.
Amanda Stanford, Head of Hospital Inspection at the Care Quality Commission (CQC) told BMI Healthcare Limited that it must improve patient safety and leadership at the hospital.
Ms Stanford said: “Overall, we rated the service provided by BMI The Duchy Hospital as inadequate because we were concerned around safety and leadership.
“As a result of this inspection we identified a number of areas where the hospital must improve and issued five requirement notices.
“We found that in surgical and outpatient services the hospital was not following the best practice guidance with regard to World Health Organisation Safety checklists to ensure the systems were as safe as they should be. We raised this with the provider after our inspection as a matter of priority so action could be taken to address our concerns.
“Since the inspection we have been assured by the hospital that they have taken steps to address the issues we raised and we will return in the near future to ensure that actions identified by the hospital have been implemented and embedded to ensure care is delivered safely and that the service is well led.”
The report also found that the hospital, which provides a range of surgical, outpatient and diagnostic imaging services to NHS and privately-funded patients, required improvement for the effectiveness of its services.
But despite the inspection result, CQC inspectors found that patients were positive about their experience of care at the hospital and 'in the main', staff were committed and treated patients with compassion, dignity and respect.
Now the hospital is said to have made improvements to the identified areas, and BMI Healthcare has invited the CQC back to re-inspect the facility and services at the earliest opportunity.
A spokesperson for the hospital said: “We appointed an experienced senior management team to ensure improvements at the hospital, including its refurbishment, have been fast-tracked.
"We made immediate changes to use of the minor procedures room and transferred the decontamination of endoscopy equipment to our specialised off-site facility.
"The team has worked with the hospital’s departmental managers to review staffing and provide further training to support the good, compassionate care our staff provide to the Duchy’s patients. The CQC has been pleased with the changes made and concluded no enforcement or other action was required.
“We were and remain disappointed with the ratings the CQC gave the hospital following its inspection over nine months ago now and we have invited the CQC to re-inspect as early as possible.
“Anyone who has any concerns following anything that they have seen or read in the media is invited to call our dedicated patient helpline on 0800 096 2254”