Page last updated at 15:04 GMT, Saturday, 2 May 2009 16:04 UK

Review for 'appalling' hospital

Stafford Hospital
Stafford Hospital said it accepted the findings

An independent regulator is to review progress made at a hospital branded "appalling" in three months' time.

The Care Quality Commission replaced the Healthcare Commission, which looked at Stafford Hospital over three years and concluded patients died needlessly.

A follow-up government review said care was now safe, but problems still existed over staffing and equipment.

Stafford Hospital said it accepted the findings and was "totally committed" to driving through improvements.

Action plan

The commission's chair, Barbara Young, said: "We're going to have to keep a pretty close eye, not in a kind of catching out sense, but in a hopefully all working together (sense) to make sure everybody's really getting a grip of the problems."

Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust showed a "lamentable failure of clinical leadership", reports revealed.

Between 400 and 1,200 more people died between 2005 and 2008 than would have been expected in a three-year period at the trust.

The reports by Professor Sir George Alberti, National Clinical Director for Emergency Care, and Dr David Colin-Thome, National Clinical Director for Primary Care, found "significant" improvements had been made at Stafford Hospital.

But they revealed there was an urgent need to make further improvements to some services.

Stafford Hospital said the recommendations made in the reports would form part of an action plan by the hospital which will be overseen by Monitor, the independent regulator of NHS foundation trusts.

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