Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has been criticised for its poor data quality in a wide ranging CQC report that rates the trust’s overall performance as inadequate.
The report released on Friday rated the Greater Manchester trust as having inadequate leadership and patient safety. Parts of the trust suffered from staffing shortages, low morale, including accepting “sup-optimal care as the norm”, and some incidents and complaints were not properly reported or investigated, the report said.
“We have considered recommending the trust go into special measures, such is the level of concern we have around quality and safety.”
The trust avoided special measures solely on the basis of Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust taking over its leadership in April, following the Care Quality Commission inspections in February and March.
In a statement, the trust said the report was “holding up a mirror” to the organisation and reflected much of what staff had been reporting.
Sir David Dalton, the trust’s new chief executive, said the trust “will be better, stronger and more determined than ever to drive up improvements” after the report.
Pennine is one of the biggest hospital trusts in the country, servicing a population of more than 800,000 in North Manchester, with a budget of about half a billion pounds a year.
Among the many concerns raised in the report was the poor quality of data collection, something that was blamed partly on a “historic lack of investment in an IT infrastructure”.
There was “a continued reliance on paper based systems to collate key performance information”, the report said.
“We did not see any evidence of testing data quality in respect of performance monitoring and management during our inspection.”
Where dashboards were being used to monitor performance, it was not clear this data was being used to inform care, the report said.
“In paediatrics and maternity we saw performance dashboards aimed to collate and report good metrics in terms of quality and performance. However, we found information collated on the dashboard was not used to inform or improve practice.”
According to Digital Health Intelligence data, Pennine has a broad range of IT systems, including Kainos Evolve document management software, and several legacy CSC’s systems.
The trust has been moving its voluminous papers record onto Evolve since 2014.