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East Kent Hospitals exits quality special measures - but financial improvements still needed

PUBLISHED: 10:08 03 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:05 03 March 2017

The William Harvey Hospital

The William Harvey Hospital

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The announcement was made yesterday (Thursday)

Matthew Kershaw Matthew Kershaw

The trust responsible for three east Kent hospitals has taken a step toward leaving special measures, more than two years after it was first plunged into them.

East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust entered the measures in September 2014, when inspectors branded services ‘inadequate’, the lowest possible rating.

But consistent improvements saw the trust’s rating move up to ‘requires improvement’ in 2015, and successful inspections at William Harvey Hospital, QEQM in Margate and Kent and Canterbury Hospital at the end of 2016 have helped pull the trust out of quality special measures.

But fears over the trust’s financial position means it will remain under the measures overall.

Chief executive Matthew Kershaw applauded the ‘hard work and dedication’ of staff at the trust, and claimed the trust was moving in the right direction to cut a multi-million pound deficit.

“We have significantly reduced our financial deficit from £35m in 2015/16 to a forecast £24m deficit this year,” explained Mr Kershaw.

“We have reduced agency spend by 11 per cent improved our financial position every quarter since April 2015 and are on track to deliver a much reduced deficit this year.

“We have been working closely with NHS Improvement and will continue to do so as we are now part of its financial special measures programme.”

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