As the results of his review into 14 hospital trusts with unusually high mortality rates were published, NHS Medical Director, Sir Bruce Keogh, said:
“Higher mortality rates do not always point to deaths which could have been avoided but they do act as a ‘smoke alarm’ indicator that there could be issues with the quality of care.
“Not one of these trusts has been given a clean bill of health by my review teams. These reviews have been highly rigorous and uncovered previously undisclosed problems.
"I felt it was crucial to provide a clear diagnosis, to write the prescription, and, most importantly, to identify what help these organisations might need to support their recovery or accelerate improvement.
“Mediocrity is simply not good enough and, based on the findings from this review I have set out an achievable ambition which will help these hospitals improve dramatically over the next two years", he added.