West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust provides acute healthcare services to a core catchment population of approximately half a million people living in West Hertfordshire and the surrounding area. The trust also provides a range of more specialist services to a wider population, serving residents of North London, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire and East Hertfordshire.
This was the third comprehensive inspection of the trust. The trust was rated as inadequate overall and was placed into special measures in September 2015. The last inspection took place in September 2016, where the trust and was rated requires improvement overall. It remained in special measures.
Part of the inspection was announced taking place from 30 August 2017 to 1 September 2017 during which time Watford General Hospital, St Alban’s City Hospital and Hemel Hempstead General Hospital were all inspected.
At Hemel Hempstead Hospital, we inspected and rated the core services of the urgent care centre, outpatients and diagnostic imaging. At the previous inspection in September 2016, the hospital was rated inadequate overall. However, since then the one service that had heavily contributed to this rating had been taken over by another trust and therefore was not inspected on this occasion.
At this latest inspection, we rated Hemel Hempstead General Hospital as requires improvement overall. We rated the urgent care centre (UCC) as requires improvement and outpatients and diagnostics services as good. For the five key questions that we inspect and rate, we rated safe, effective and well-led as requires improvement. Caring and
responsive was rated as good overall. This was an improvement.