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Hospital, in special measures, has hopes for bright future

To say it's had a troubled history is a massive understatement. The Medway Maritime Hospital is in special measures. The NHS Trust that runs it has been dubbed as the worst in the country. The Care Quality Commission has demanded urgent improvements.

The hospital has revealed the latest chapter on what it's hoped will be a bright, new future. It's opened a new minor injuries unit in the Accident and Emergency department. Further developments are planned next year.

But will it be enough to heal the hospital's ills and restore public confidence? Our reporter Tom Savvides has the latest.


Two charged after fire at garage in Chatham

Kent Police has charged two people with arson, aggravated vehicle taking and burglary after a fire at a car garage in Chatham in March.

It was reported that a fire was started overnight on March 24 at Regency Motor Company in The Brook, and that a vehicle and a safe containing some cash were stolen.

A 13-year-old boy, from Chatham, and Tyler Alex Turner, aged 20, of Ryde Close, Chatham, charged on September 21.

They have both been bailed to appear at Medway Magistrates’ Court on 19 October.

England take on France in rugby showdown in Kent

England v France Credit: ITV Meridian

While Rugby World Cup fever may be sweeping the country, there's another rugby tournament taking place in Kent with some of the most talented international players.

The Wheelchair Rugby League European Championships are taking place at Medway Park in Gillingham.

It features teams from England, France, Wales, Ireland and Scotland battling it out over four days.

England v France Credit: ITV Meridian
England v France Credit: ITV Meridian

Rugby players from five different countries have been taking part in a major tournament with a difference. The Wheelchair Rugby League European Championships are primarily aimed at sports men and women with disabilities. But able-bodied players are also allowed to compete. Tom Savvides reports from Medway Park in Gillingham, where the event is taking place. He talks to England player Adam Barnett, Ireland player George Hill, Wales player Martin Beddis and Elizabeth Ferris, a former Scotland player.


Risk to patients' safety at Kent flagship hospital

It's another blow to the people of Medway - their flagship hospital, which has been in special measures for more than two years, has again been told its casualty department is not up to scratch.

Things are so bad that the Trust in charge has reached out to other parts of the NHS for help. On Wednesday and Thursday mornings this week, ambulances won't go to the Medway Maritime but instead will take patients to Maidstone, the Darent Valley or even to Canterbury.

Bosses say it's a temporary measure but inspectors from the Care Quality Commission say there's a lack of leadership - and a risk to patient safety.

David Johns talked to Simon Bolton, Unison, and Councillor David Brake, Medway Council. Conservative.

NHS acts to make hospital changes after CQC report

Following a recent inspection of Medway Foundation Trust by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) the Trust has asked for support from across the local healthcare system to help them make the improvements needed. Ambulances will be diverted from Medway Maritime Hospital between 7am and midday on Wednesday 16th and Thursday 17th September. Walk-in patients to the A&E department will continue to be seen at the hospital.

Ambulance patients will instead be taken, according to clinical need, to either Maidstone Hospital, Darent Valley Hospital or the Kent and Canterbury Hospital. Some patients including paediatric, cardiac, maternity and abdominal aortic aneurysm will continue to be taken to the Medway Maritime Hospital.

NHS England is working closely alongside the ambulance service and all local NHS hospitals and providers to implement this temporary measure whilst staff at Medway Maritime Hospital continue to work to improve services to patients. We are also working with partners across the healthcare system to put in place further measures to support staff at the hospital. This includes additional training for clinical staff in the emergency department and bringing in experienced clinical staff to work in Medway Maritime’s A&E department which will allow staff time to attend training.

We are also working with local authorities and community health teams to help improve the flow of patients through the hospital. Ensuring the delivery of safe care to patients and the public in Kent and Medway is our absolute priority.


Hospital A&E still putting patients at risk

Patients in the Emergency Department at Medway Maritime Hospital are still being put at risk, according to the latest inspection.

The Care Quality Commission visited the hospital at the end of August and found that staff in A and E weren't able to cope during busy periods.

Just a few months ago a new Chief Executive was appointed to turn things around.

In a statement before the inspection, Lesley Dwyer said it wasn't possible for the trust to go from inadequate to outstanding overnight but that an action plan was in place.

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