CLEANER wards and better meals for patients have earned Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust a rating of excellent by a health watchdog.
Top marks were awarded in the annual inspection carried out by the Patient Experience Action Team, led by the National Patient Safety Agency. St Richard’s, Worthing and and Southlands hospitals were inspected for cleanliness and the environment (including infection control), food standards, privacy and dignity (including the provision of mixed-sex accommodation).
Each site earned the top grade on each of the three measures. Improvements include new team cleaning systems in which each ward gets visited twice a day by a group of six to eight cleaners instead of just one, while nurses have also been focusing on improving the organisation of each ward. All three hospitals now operate a standard menu for patients and a series of new hot trolleys were also purchased.
The trust’s director of facilities and estates Paul Hatcher said: “People rightly expect clean, comfortable and safe hospitals, where they are treated with dignity. We have worked extremely hard to achieve those goals and these superb results are a welcome recognition of that.
“We always want to improve the care we give to patients, and I would like to thank our staff for the effort and skill they have devoted to doing just that.”