Share your experience about Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Staff at Northumbria Healthcare's new hospital at Cramlington. The trust has been chosen to spearhead national work and develop a 'multihospital chain'.
Staff at Northumbria Healthcare's new hospital at Cramlington. The trust has been chosen to spearhead national work and develop a 'multihospital chain'.

England’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals is inviting members of the public to tell his inspection panel what they think of the services provided by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

Their views and experiences will help inspectors decide what to look at when they inspect the services provided by the Trust in November this year.

The Trust will be inspected and given an overall rating under radical changes which have been introduced by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The formal inspection of the Trust will start on Tuesday, November 10.

The Chief Inspector, Professor Sir Mike Richards, said that he will lead significantly larger inspection teams than before, headed up by clinical and other experts including trained members of the public.

To ensure the views of patients and the local community are properly heard, local Healthwatch and CQC will be holding joint listening events on the following dates:

○ Thursday, October 22: Trinity Church Hall, Beaumont St, Hexham, 3pm; Council Registry Office, 27 Fenkle St, Alnwick, 3pm.

○ Friday, November 6: The Venue, Manor Walks Shopping Centre, Cramlington, 3pm; Whitley Bay Customer First Centre, York Road, Whitley Bay, 3pm.

People are being encouraged to attend a listening event to find out more about the inspection process, to tell the team about their experiences of care from the past year and to say where they would like to see improvements made in the future.

Sir Mike said: “The new inspections are designed to provide people with a clear picture of the quality of the services in their local hospital, exposing poor or mediocre care as well as highlighting the many hospitals providing good and excellent care.

“We know there is too much variation in quality – these new in-depth inspections will allow us to get a much more detailed picture of care in hospitals than ever before.

“Of course we will be talking to doctors and nurses, hospital managers and patients in the hospital. But it is vital that we also hear the views of the people who have had care at any of the hospitals run by the trust, or anyone else who wants to share information with us. This will help us plan our inspection, and so help us focus on the things that really matter to people who depend on this service.

“This is your opportunity to tell me and my team what you think, and make a difference to NHS services in the local area.”

Sir Mike’s inspection team is expected to look in detail at eight key service areas: A&E; medical care surgery; intensive/critical care; maternity; paediatrics/children’s care; end of life care; and outpatients. As well as: Community dentistry, community services for children and young people, community services for adults and community end of life care.

A full report of the inspectors’ findings will be published by the CQC later in the year. The Trust will be one of the first to be given one of the following ratings: Outstanding, Good, Requiring improvement or Inadequate.