The inspection report into the East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs the Eastbourne DGH, has been delayed again.
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspected the NHS Trust and its hospitals in September last year, and the report was due to be published in December.
But since then, there have been several delays, and it is now expected to be published in mid-March. The CQC said ‘personal circumstances’ of a person involved in the report was partly to blame for the delay.
MP for Eastbourne & Willingdon Stephen Lloyd said, “This delay is incredibly frustrating for all of us, including staff at the Trust, patients, local residents and the SaveTheDGH campaign team.
“It is vital Eastbourne knows where it stands with our core services at the DGH, and the transport challenges local residents are faced with getting to and from the Conquest Hospital in Hastings.”
A CQC spokesman said, “There has been an unavoidable delay due to personal circumstances of a key person involved in the inspection work. The report had been through CQC national quality assurance group several times to ensure that the judgements were balanced and reasonable based on the evidence that was found and that this was important to ensure consistency nationally and to be as fair as possible to trusts, this is a standard process with all CQC inspections of this size.
“The report by law has to also go through a factual accuracy process and the Trust has the right challenge the CQC on factual points on the report when this happens as in this case then CQC have to consider these challenges and this can slow the process down as well. We anticipate that the report will be published in the very near future.”