The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of healthcare services in England. The CQC works with NHS organisations like us to make sure we provide people with safe, effective, compassionate and high-quality care.

CQC rating

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of healthcare services in England. The CQC works with NHS organisations like us to make sure we provide people with safe, effective, compassionate and high-quality care.

Services are assessed according to the CQC’s five domains: Safe, Effective, Caring, Responsive and Well-led.

Services are then rated. The categories for ratings are: Inadequate, Requires improvement, Good and Outstanding.  These ratings are then added up to produce an overall rating for each hospital, as well as a rating for the Trust overall. Further information on our Trust-wide rating can be found below. 

Our latest inspection: Medical care at Charing Cross, Hammersmith and St Mary's hospitals, and maternity services at St Mary's Hospital 

The CQC returned to inspect medical care at Charing Cross, Hammersmith and St Mary's hospitals, and maternity services at St Mary's Hospital, in March 2017.

Inspection results

The CQC's report on the March 2017 service-level inspection highlights outstanding aspects of care while also calling for some immediate improvements. 

The rating for medical care at Charing Cross Hospital has increased by one level, to 'good', while the ratings for medical care at Hammersmith and St Mary's hospitals remained the same, 'requires improvement'. The rating for maternity services at St Mary's Hospital decreased one level, down to 'requires improvement'. 

Areas of outstanding practice

The CQC identified three areas of outstanding practice in medical services:

  • introducing the 'side by side' initiative by the Alzheimer's Society which helps people with dementia access recreational activities while in hospital
  • The development of a nutrition pathway to ensure vulnerable patients receive the food and drink they need while in hospital without losing the independence they had before hospital admission
  • The introduction of an award winning nurse-led cirrhosis clinic to improve the screening of patients at high risk of developing severe complications from substance misuse.

However, there are a number of areas in which it was clear the Trust needs to make urgent improvements. These include:

  • Ensuring that all services routinely follow the Trust's medicine management policies
  • Improving our compliance with mandatory and specialist training, including safeguarding, resuscitation and bereavement training
  • Improving governance processes and structures in maternity, with all identified risks included on the maternity service's risk register.

For further information please read our news release.

CQC national survey of emergency departments in 2016

The CQC published its national survey of emergency departments on 17 October 2017 – the Trust was identified as performing 'worse than expected' from responses provided by 240 patients who used the Charing Cross or St Mary's emergency department during September 2016.

For further information please read our news release. 

Outpatient and diagnostic imaging services CQC inspection in November 2016

The CQC returned to inspect outpatient and diagnostic imaging services in November 2016.

Inspection results 

The CQC has found that outpatient services and diagnostic imaging across all of our sites have improved since our first, full inspection in September 2014.

CQC ratings for outpatient and diagnostic imaging services overall at St Mary’s and Hammersmith hospitals have increased by two levels, to ‘good’, while the rating for Charing Cross increased by one level, to ‘requires improvement’. 

Areas of outstanding practice

The CQC identified two areas of outstanding practice in outpatient services.

  • The Trust-wide Outpatient Improvement Programme, which was launched in May 2015 and will continue to make further improvements during 2017/18
  • The HIV and Sexual Health Service located in the Jefferiss Wing at St Mary’s Hospital was noted for its “track record of building staff skill mix and service sustainability”

For further information please read our latest news release

Our last trust-wide CQC inspection: September 2014

We were inspected by the CQC in September 2014 and four of our hospitals were visited:

The CQC considers the Western Eye Hospital to be a specialist hospital so it was not included in our inspection and will be inspected separately.

The CQC inspected nine services across four of our hospitals:

  • Urgent and emergency care
  • Medical care (including older peoples’ care)
  • Surgery
  • Critical care
  • Maternity and gynaecology
  • Neonatal services
  • Services for children and young people
  • End of life care
  • Outpatients and diagnostic imaging

Inspection results

All of our ratings and our inspection reports are available on the CQC website.

You can also see our initial response to the CQC’s findings here.

Overall, as a Trust, we were rated as ‘requires improvement’. In terms of the CQC’s five domains, we were awarded the following ratings:

Domain

 Rating

Safe

 Requires improvement

Effective

 Good

Caring

 Good

Responsive

 Requires improvement

Well-led

 Requires improvement

Hospital ratings

Hospital

 Rating

Queen Charlotte’s & Chelsea Hospital

Good

Charing Cross Hospital

Requires improvement

Hammersmith Hospital

Requires improvement 

St Mary’s Hospital

Requires improvement 

 

Ratings for our services

  • Two of our core services, maternity and gynaecology, and end of life care, were rated as ‘good’ across all sites
  • Our outpatient departments and diagnostic imaging, both core services, were rated as ‘inadequate’ across all sites
  • Our remaining core services received a mixture of ‘good’ and ‘requires improvement’ ratings across the sites 

Areas of outstanding practice

During their visit, the CQC identified a number of areas of outstanding practice at the Trust:

  • Our patient outcomes for trauma and stroke services at Charing Cross Hospital, which are some of the best in the country
  • The NIHR Biomedical Research Centre, which is hosted by our Trust, and has a strong focus on translational research
  • The impact of our new CEO and senior leadership team and the optimism among our staff
  • The leadership programmes available to staff, which aim to drive exceptional performance