Hospital boss admits he considered resigning after poor CQC report

Mark Davies, chief executive of the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital. Photo: NNUH

Mark Davies, chief executive of the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital. Photo: NNUH - Credit: Archant

The boss of the region's busiest hospital admitted he considered resigning when he saw the inspection report which placed the organisation into special measures.

Michael Chenery of Horsbrugh, Norfolk County councillor.

Michael Chenery of Horsbrugh, Norfolk County councillor. - Credit: Norfolk County Council

Mark Davies, chief executive of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH), was speaking at a Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) meeting at County Hall on Thursday.

Trust chiefs had been summoned before councillors to explain what steps they were taking to turn the hospital around after its inspection report was published by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in June.

Then, inspectors found the trust was poorly led and unsafe, rating them inadequate. But councillors were impressed with plans to improve and said it was 'refreshing' to see clear actions were being taken.

Mr Davies said: 'When you read a report like this, you do a lot of self reflection. You look and you think 'what role have I played in this, good or bad?'. I did a lot of soul searching. I thought 'is it time for me not to be here? Or do I have a sense of responsibility to do something about it?'

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Mr Davies, along with chief nurse Professor Nancy Fontaine and operations directors Richard Parker, told councillors they were doing more to listen to staff and ensure they felt able to report concerns.

He said he had implemented staff meetings and MP-style surgeries to encourage feedback.

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And they aimed to be out of special measures by next year - with ambitions to be rated as outstanding in five years time.

Mr Davies said: 'We want to be an outstanding hospital and outstanding in every sense of the word, and one of the safest hospitals in the UK.'

Committee chairman Michael Chenery was impressed by the plans and said: 'Out of all three trusts in special measures, you may be the first to come out.'

Other trusts in special measures in Norfolk are the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in King's Lynn, and the mental health trust, Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust (NSFT).

Mr Davies also said they were speaking to the government to try and get help covering the £20m a year it costs to pay the private finance initiative (PFI) bill incurred by the hospital.

He said: 'We're making a case to say surely there could be a case for having central support.'

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