Ipswich: Hospital fined more than �160k for failing to meet key performance targets

IPSWICH Hospital has been fined more than �166,000 for failing to meet key targets for its accident and emergency department.

A NHS Trust monthly performance report identifies eight areas where the hospital’s A&E department has failed since April.

In half of those areas the hospital has not met the agreed target for eight consecutive months.

The areas include time taken for patients to be assessed and some A&E waiting times.

The fines include �43,146 for patients waiting longer than six hours, �58,374 for patients waiting more than 25 minutes for an initial assessment and �53,021 for ambulance handovers exceeding 15 minutes.

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Since April almost 460 patients have waited more than six hours in the department.

Ben Gummer, MP for Ipswich, said it was important for the hospital to be hitting targets and would be talking with bosses to find out what can be done to improve performance.

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He said: “I know from my own experience from my family that the care the accident and emergency team give is fantastic but clearly they need to be hitting all of their targets they set themselves.

“It’s good that they are open and honest with the public about where there are falling down and I will be talking to the hospital management in the next few days about what measures are being taken to ensure that every target area improves.”

The report’s findings also criticise the hospital’s control of its budget for staff pay.

Since April the hospital has overspent by �1.5m on pay partly because of its use of agency staff.

The report calls for “immediate action” on the pay levels if the hospital is to control its finances.

Ipswich Hospital spokeswoman Jan Ingle said: “We are working hard with all our partner organisations – NHS Suffolk and primary care colleagues - to make sure that we achieve all the standards expected of us.

“The last survey of the emergency department shows a very positive response from patients as they rated it at eight out of ten. It shows the job that we do in the department is hugely involved.”

The hospital is holding a board meeting on Thursday to discuss the figures.

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