Good recovery: inspectors witness big improvements at Corby’s most important health hub
Just 12 months after an appalling inspection, the urgent care centre is back to good health after ‘extensive changes’
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By Sarah Ward
A dynamic new leadership team has turned around the care being provided by Corby’s Urgent Care Centre (UCC), according to a new report by health inspectors.
The Care Quality Commission has now rated the centre in Cottingham Road, Corby, as good in all areas, a huge improvement from the inadequate rating it was given last October.
Then the inspectors found the centre was short staffed, lacking in clinical oversight and not providing good enough care for children, but at the visit on October 18 this year inspector Dr Sean O’Kelly witnessed an almost complete reversal with happy and motivated staff, a well run service and safeguarding leads who had been trained to an advanced level.
The report will come as a relief to many as it is Corby’s primary health hub, providing a walk-in service, diagnostics, treatment and maternity services and is open year round from 8am to 8pm.
It helps to reduce the pressures on Kettering’s accident and emergency department, which is running at over capacity and awaiting improvements.
Yorkshire based OneMedicare took over the running of the centre in 2019. After the inadequate inspection they bought in new management, with Candice Adey-Williams appointed as operations director in May this year.
Under her direction the UCC has transformed.
Health campaigner, Labour councillor Lyn Buckingham, who in 2019 successfully took legal action against the former Corby Clinical Commissioning group over plans to downgrade the centre, said:
“It’s wonderful news that the UCC has turned a negative CQC inspection around in such a short amount of time. Corby has always known that the services provided by the urgent care centre are second to none and were surprised at the last report from the CQC. The fact that we are now back to a good, is just what the doctor ordered.
“The UCC is trying to ensure that the voice of the patient is heard and has set up their own patient-led forum to ensure they continue to have a service that listens and understands the issues.
“We as a [Labour] group will ensure that the UCC takes a role in the new integrated care system and Corby’s Health and wellbeing forum.”
In his 18 page report Mr O’Kelly writes about a well managed service with safeguarding at its centre.
“We noted significant improvements at this inspection as a result of extensive changes within the service and therefore the service is rated as good overall, including for all key questions:
• Our previous inspection report was used to undertake a full internal service review. This resulted in a number of changes at the service which included changes to staffing structures and improvements to systems and processes. Additionally, we noted vast improvements to staff morale during our inspection.
• We observed strengthened systems and processes to keep patients safe and safeguarded from abuse.
• An established clinical triage system had been implemented since our previous inspection. Overall we observed effective systems to navigate, monitor and manage patient journey through the service.
• The service had strengthened their paediatric care systems to ensure that infants, children and young people were navigated to care in a safe, effective and timely way. Safeguarding leads were trained to advanced levels for safeguarding children.
• Previous concerns regarding staffing levels and staff working under pressure had been addressed with changes in recruitment and improved rota management. In addition we noted clear clinical oversight, supervision and operational management in place during this inspection.
• The provider ensured that all staff worked within their scope of practice and had access to clinical support when required.
• Staff had the information they needed to deliver safe care and treatment to patients. There was evidence demonstrating safe and appropriate use of medicines.
• Systems, processes, risks and the effectiveness of patient care was stringently monitored and routinely audited in a systematic way. The service identified themes, shared learning and took action to improve safety. There were systems in place for dealing with surges in demand.
• Staff worked together, and worked well with other organisations to deliver effective care and treatment. Feedback gathered from patients during the inspection was positive and complimentary about the service.
• Leaders were experienced and dynamic, they expressed an authentic passion and dedication to delivering high quality care.
• The inspection team noted that staff came across as incredibly proud to work at the service. Staff demonstrated immense pride in their work when speaking with the inspection team.
• Staff expressed that the service had gone from strength to strength with the new management structure and described individuals as being fundamental in driving positive changes within the service.
We have contacted OneMedia for comment.