UK hospitals get another regulatory blast for shoddy services
22 November 2013
Yet another regulatory report on Thursday has blasted the quality of healthcare in UK's hospital, which has been under the scanner by various official agencies for several months now.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) says that more than half a million elderly people are being admitted to hospital with conditions which could have been avoided if they had not been neglected by GPs (general practitioners), care homes and social services.
It's report highlights increasing numbers of patients being admitted to hospital as an emergency case when they were suffering from complaints such as malnutrition and bedsores, which are often caused by poor care and neglect.
It said the National Health Service (NHS) has still not learned from the 'Mid-Staffs scandal', where more than 3,000 inspections last year uncovered basic failings at care homes and hospitals.
The CQC said hospitals have made ''no improvement'' in monitoring the quality of care or in ensuring that patients are kept safe or treated with dignity and respect.
Inspectors were ''alarmed'' to see the way patients were treated, its annual report says, with ''unacceptable'' failures to protect the most vulnerable and a further deterioration from already poor standards.
The study found the number of older people being admitted to hospital in an emergency, with conditions which could have been avoided - such as pneumonia, malnutrition and pressure sores - is far outstripping the growth in the older population.
The number of those admitted with avoidable conditions is up from 374,000 in 2007-08 to 530,000 in 2012-13.
There has been a 64 per cent increase in the last six years in pneumonia admissions among older people, while admissions for urinary tract infections have seen a 45 per cent increase.
David Behan, chief executive of the CQC, said, ''Those responsible for care in local areas need to work together quickly to address the number of avoidable emergency admissions to hospital.
''GPs, care homes, home care agencies, community health services and hospitals, with local commissioners, must plan effectively to make sure our older and more vulnerable people are cared for in the way they deserve.
''Where care can be provided for people outside of hospitals, it is better for them and eases pressures on hospital services.''