IT has been a busy year for South Warwickshire Foundation Trust – but staff say their hard work has been worthwhile.
The doctors, nurses and support workers – to name just a few – have had a hectic year with the opening of two new wards in Warwick for orthopaedic patients, along with the paid-for Beauchamp suite – which has the same NHS care but from private rooms.
It has seen the number being cared for the by the hospital increase by around 60 patients.
And breaking the norm for the rest of the country, the trust is building a new hospital in Stratford specifically for eye and cancer patients. The new building promises to ‘transform’ care in the town and surrounding areas. So far supportive residents have raised an impressive £900,000 to help the cause.
Changes have had to be made too, with trust bosses left shocked after receiving a ‘requiring improvement’ rating from healthcare inspectors the Care Quality Commission.
They are appealing the rating and pushing for a repeat inspection after tightening up compliance in a number of areas, including holding regular risk assessments, completing cleaning schedules, and staff training.
They say they are hopeful they will be given a better score when inspectors re-visit the trust and hope to hear back on their appeal soon.
Despite the rating satisfaction has been consistently high, with staff recommending SWFT as a place to work or receive treatment in a national survey. They were also shortlisted for three awards by the prestigious Health Service Journal.
But it has not been smooth sailing for drivers at Warwick Hospital’s car park after two crashes happened within months of each other – one requiring currently ongoing repairs to the trust’s largest training facility.
Going into 2017 a number of changes are lined up, with a consultation starting on stroke services following a proposal to move specialist care from local hospitals to University Hospital Coventry. The proposals – which are part of the Coventry and Warwickshire Sustainability and Transformation Plan – have been greeted by mixed reactions from users of the service.
But care promises to improve for eye and cancer patients and expectant mothers due to the completion of Stratford Hospital and plans to develop a new midwife-led unit at Warwick Hospital’s maternity department.
Chief executive Glen Burley said: “2016 has been a great year for the trust. Despite increasing challenges that face the NHS, we have continued to deliver safe, effective, compassionate care to communities across Warwickshire.
“We have achieved so much over the year thanks to the dedication and hard work of our staff. I would like to take this opportunity to thank them all for continuing to put patient care at the heart of everything they do.”