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Health chairman ‘shocked’ with letter to QA boss

Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham.

Queen Alexandra Hospital in Cosham.

AN URGENT meeting has been set up to discuss a damning letter sent to the chief executive of a hospital trust.

Councillor Peter Eddis, chairman of Portsmouth City Council’s health, overview and scrutiny panel, has called for a meeting with Dr Jim Hogan.

Dr Hogan is the lead of the Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Group, which buys in health services for the area.

As reported on Saturday, the Portsmouth, Fareham & Gosport, and South-East Hampshire CCGs wrote three separate letters to Ursula Ward – the chief executive of Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs QA – over concerns about patient care.

It comes as the trust has been missing national targets in some areas of cancer care, waiting times for elective surgery and in its A&E department.

And October results of the Friends and Family Test – a survey to see if patients would recommend services – found the trust scored the lowest in the country.

But Cllr Eddis said the letter came as a surprise.

He said: ‘I’m shocked, this letter has come out of the blue. We had a meeting with the CCG in November, and at no point were we aware of so many problems at QA.

‘We were aware of the ongoing problems with A&E, but the other areas were not brought up with us.

‘I want a meeting about this, as I’m not happy.’

A meeting is scheduled for January 30.

Dr Hogan said: ‘We have been transparent regarding our concerns through, for example, our regular performance reports and discussion in public at governing board meetings.

‘We did not specifically inform the panel in advance about the letter, but the performance issues that we have with PHT have been featured on our public reports for some time.

‘The decision to write the letter was made after our last informal meeting with the panel last November.

‘At our regular informal meetings with the panel, both the CCG and the panel, have shared their concerns regarding the performance of the hospital and some of these concerns have been features of scrutiny at formal panel meetings.’

 

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