Weston Area Health Trust getting better
By Prue_Reid | Thursday, October 04, 2012, 11:33
Weston Area Health NHS Trust chief executive Peter Colclough told an audience at the annual meeting of a successful past year..
He particularly singled out that Weston General Hospital has not had a single case of the infection MRSA in the last 18 months.
Peter described the progress of the WAHT against hospital acquired infections in recent months as 'absolutely astonishing'.
Comparing the rate of infections at Weston with the much higher national average figure, he said: "There is significantly less chance of a patient acquiring an infection as a result of staying here now, which is to be celebrated."
He also pointed out that WAHT had delivered more than 200,000 episodes of care during the last year – to a catchment population of around 150,000.
He said: "This must mean we touched practically every family group in the population.
"I think that puts into perspective the wider social purpose of the WAHT, its staff and services within our local community."
Among other achievements during 2001-12, which he highlighted to the audience were:
- Praise from the Care Quality Commission for Children's Services which were judged fully compliant with national safety standards;
- Two major ward refurbishments and the installation of a birthing pool;
- Weston being named in the independently-judged 40 Top Hospitals for a record eight year;
- A significant improvement in national outpatient survey results;
- A high standard achieved in national cancer patient survey results; and
- An 'excellent' score for hospital food from the Patient Environment Action Team.
Peter also listed some of the innovative work being done throughout the WAHT which is raising the standard and quality of care being offered.
- Positive national attention for Weston's Ambulatory Care Centre, where patients are treated in one day, instead of having to be admitted overnight;
- A new specialist dietetic service for cancer patients;
- An electronic system for recording the wishes of end-of-life patients, so they can be known to all health professionals who meet them; and
- Specially trained volunteers who help Dementia patients.
Finally, he talked about WAHT financial position.
He said it had achieved its planned year-end surplus of £3.6 million in 2011-12 and made savings of £5 million.
He said WAHT was planning to deliver a surplus of £2.2 million in 2012-13 and pointed out that if this was achieved it would have paid off its outstanding Department of Health loan and be debt-free for the first time for many years.
WAHT chairman Chris Creswick closed the evening by saying: "We wish to continue to provide safe, high-quality facilities for our patients and a good working environment for our staff – and we have to do it within the funds available to us.
"We are working in a changing environment, and making the best use of the skills of our staff and our links with the wider health and care community in North Somerset, offers us enormous scope to be imaginative and positive in the future."