Harrogate Hospital rated among BEST IN ENGLAND for A&E and cancer care

Patients needing emergency medical attention at Harrogate District Hospital have rated the care they received as the best in the country.

Clinical Lead and Consultant in Emergency Medicine Dr. Matt Shepherd with some of the members of the A&E team, Sister Kirstie Fitt, Dr. Jennifer Lockwood, Dr. Nas Malik, Dr. Kanwal Uzair, Registered Nurse Katie Stockdale, Clinical Practitioner Darran Miller and Dr. Helen Law. (1710245AM1)

The latest Care Quality Commission national Emergency Department Patient Survey results show that patients rank Harrogate District Hospital joint first out of 136 participating trusts.

Asked to rate their overall experience in the Emergency Department (ED), on average Harrogate patients rated the Trust 8.6 out of 10, seeing a 0.4 increase on last year's result.

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Dr Matt Shepherd, Lead Consultant in the Emergency Department, said: “I’m delighted that patients’ views and experiences with us in the Emergency Department mean we are ranked joint highest in the country. That’s an incredible accolade and we’re all very proud.

The survey found that patients felt more reassured and involved in their care and treatment, with an increase in scores in the majority of questions compared to results from the previous year.

The best performing area for the Trust was care with ‘respect and dignity’ where staff scored 9.3, while the most improved area in the survey was ‘tests’, where the Trust scored 9.1 this year.

But the fantastic work by the Trust doesn't stop there.

For the 2016 Cancer Care Survey, HDFT landed joint forth out of 148 Trusts which took part, achieving an average score of 80.4.

But what's more, excluding the cancer specialist centres from the results, Harrogate was placed joint first, along with Yeovil Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Dr Ros Tolcher, Chief Executive of HDFT, said: “These results reflect the tremendous commitment of colleagues in the ED and across the hospital who work tirelessly to provide high quality patient care.

"I would like to thank colleagues across the Trust and at our partner organisations, who play vital roles in helping to deliver timely, safe and appropriate, emergency care.

“This is an excellent report and complements a number of other ways by which we measure patient experience, to help us build up a comprehensive understanding of what our patients think about us. It really does help us learn and improve."

But the number of people attending the ED continues to rise and Harrogate District Hospital can only continue to do well with the support of the community who use it.

Clinicians and managers have urged members of the public to help the Trust continue to perform well by only going to the ED in a genuine emergency.

Dr Shepherd said: “Harrogate, like much of the country, has experienced ever-increasing numbers of patients coming to the ED. Many of the patients we are seeing are very poorly and need admission to hospital.

“However, attendances at the ED with non-emergency conditions mean longer waits for those patients who really do need care, as well as extra pressure on our staff throughout the Trust.

"Colleagues are working very hard to cope with the demand but we need local people to help by only coming to the department when really necessary.”

To help the NHS deliver the best possible care to everyone, if you have an illness that is not severe, then please visit the NHS 111 website, call NHS 111, contact your own GP or see a local pharmacist for advice before choosing to go to the Emergency Department.