Private hospital put NHS patients ‘at high risk of harm’

A private hospital that treats thousands of NHS patients put their safety at risk, says a new report by the health watchdog. Staff told inspectors that meeting financial targets was considered more important.

In the latest official criticism of a hospital run by major UK provider BMI Healthcare, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated Fawkham Manor hospital in Kent as “inadequate” – the worst possible ranking.

Staff told the CQC that financial targets were prioritised over patient safety at the hospital, where NHS patients make up almost half the caseload and where a senior surgeon is being investigated for carrying out unnecessary and substandard surgery – as revealed by the Bureau last month.

During several visits to Fawkham Manor last August and November, inspectors witnessed the wrong patient being taken to theatre, and staff going into theatres without cleaning their hands or making thorough pre-operative checks. Theatre equipment, including that for use in emergencies, was “poorly maintained”.

Full Article on The Bureau of Investigative Journalism 23 February 2017