New inspection regime in England sees Whipps Cross hospital downgraded

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 15 August 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f5138
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

England’s healthcare watchdog the Care Quality Commission has shown its teeth in a highly critical report on Whipps Cross University Hospital in east London.1 The hospital, part of Barts Health NHS Trust, has been issued with three formal warnings, covering cleanliness and infection control, equipment standards, and support to staff, and has been found to be in breach of 10 of the 16 national standards of quality and safety.

The strongly worded report is in contrast to the results of a routine inspection last November, in which the hospital met four out of five of the standards being inspected, failing only on “supporting workers,” where the commission said action was needed. Since then the CQC has a new chairman, David Prior, who has been outspoken in his criticism of the inspections carried out under his predecessors,2 and Mike Richards has been appointed chief inspector of hospitals.3

Either the hospital declined sharply in six …

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