James Paget University Hospital AGM and annual reports look back at ‘turbulent’ year

General view of the James Paget University Hospital at Gorleston, Norfolk; October 2011; Picture: Ja

General view of the James Paget University Hospital at Gorleston, Norfolk; October 2011; Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2011

From failing to meet basic standards to making huge improvements in dementia care, the ups and downs of the James Paget University Hospital's last year have been highlighted in its annual report.

James Paget university Hospital Chairman David Wright. Picture: Nick Butcher

James Paget university Hospital Chairman David Wright. Picture: Nick Butcher - Credit: Picture: Nick Butcher

While better care for the ever increasing number of dementia patients in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney region was the focus of the JPH's annual general meeting and annual members' meeting on Monday (September 16) night, the report published this week looks back on the whole tumultuous 12 months.

In February 2012, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and Monitor regulatory bodies found the Gorleston hospital to be in significant breach of both the standards of care and governance. But by the end of the year, the JPH had turned its fortunes around – it was fully compliant with CQC standards, Monitor had issued high ratings for governance and financial management, accident and emergency waiting times were being met and the number of both MRSA and C Diff infections were down, with no MRSA reported at all in 2012/13.

Speaking at the meeting, trust chairman David Wright congratulated staff on their achievements and pledged that further improvements would be made.

Newly appointed chief executive Christine Allen gave an overview of 2012/13, highlighting the 'impressive turnaround in performance'.

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In the report, Mr Wright said: 'The year has again been a turbulent one for the trust. We cannot be complacent as clearly there is still much to be done. From time to time we do fail, but our staff have really worked hard to make vital improvements to the way we care for our patients.'

Turning to finances, the report said the trust achieved its financial targets for 2012/13 with a surplus of £2.52 million, compared with £2.99 million in 2011/12, and talked of the in-house 'transformation team' created this year to focus on savings.

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'The financial challenge remains and we know that 2013/14 will be the most financially difficult year the trust has experienced to date,' said former chief executive David Hill.

Also featured in the report is information on JPH's stroke rehabilitation targets, staff sickness, apprenticeships, health and safety training and working practicies that have been created or reviewed in the past year, from the Patient & Carer Experience Committee (PACE) that now includes a wider section of representatives and the 15 Steps Challenge, introduced in November 2012, which is a tool for staff to see a ward as patients do.

The opening of the Louise Hamilton Centre for palliative care is also praised, while it's revealed the number of JPH patients involved in studies in 2012/13 increased to approximately 1,000 against a research network target of 500. The research team has also grown and there are now 14 dedicated research nurses and research management/support staff, with plans to grow further in 2013/14.

To read the report online, visit www.jpaget.nhs.uk.

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