Time, and winter, will tell if changes are made at QA

The QA Hospital
The QA Hospital
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It’s been a long time coming. But finally an official report has found what most of us have known for years – our own super-hospital’s accident and emergency department was being run into the ground.

Crucially the report by the Care Quality Commission laid the blame not at the department’s door, but with the Queen Alexandra Hospital’s executive team, headed up by the now ex-chief executive, Ursula Ward.

I’m sure the pressures with A&E aren’t entirely to blame, but the fact remains it has taken too long to even begin to address this situation

It said ‘senior medical leadership in the department had tried unsuccessfully for some considerable time to engage productively with the executive team to produce effective and necessary change’.

And that’s the crux of it. People have been left in corridors for years, with A&E staff desperately making the best of it.

Patients have been herded into the weirdly-named jumbulance, which sounds like something that would turn up at a kid’s birthday party, not a vehicle parked in the hospital car park and used as an A&E overflow ward.

For years the ambulances stacking up outside A&E have been ambulances that cannot meet time targets.

But instead of throwing QA under the jumbulance, South Central Ambulance Service – in public, at least – took it on the chin. Because, let’s face it, when an ambulance doesn’t turn up to a serious collision on the A27, no-one would think to blame the hospital, would they?

I’m sure the pressures with A&E aren’t entirely to blame, but the fact remains it has taken too long to even begin to address this situation.

It’s people’s lives that are in the balance, but it seems to have taken the intervention of the CQC and the resignation of Ms Ward to kickstart the process.

And now the QA is on the national news, just weeks after Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust was also splashed across BBC Breakfast after a similarly damning report from the CQC.

It’s not confidence-inspiring, is it? We’re hearing the usual promises: that a new broom CEO is ready to sweep away the mistakes of the past, that a whizzy director is coming in to ensure the department has the support it needs at executive level, and that the jumbulance will be no more. Time, and winter, will tell.

THERE ARE BAD CYCLISTS - BUT THERE ARE BAD DRIVERS TOO

Cyclists are, apparently, like the Kamikaze during the Second World War.

True, I’m generally heading in the direction of the Royal Navy’s ships every time I cycle to work, but I didn’t realise I was never supposed to make it home again.

But, thanks to the commenter underneath The News’s online coverage of the Pearl Izumi Tour’s Portsmouth conclusion, I now know the truth.

The comment just serves to highlight the hysteria about cyclists in Portsmouth.

I’m a relative newcomer to the world of cycling, and I remember just the thought of getting on a bike in all that traffic was terrifying.

There are bad cyclists everywhere, but there are bad drivers too. Probably they’re the same people.

WHATEVER THE RESULTS ON THE PITCH, THIS IS A WIN FOR FRANCE

It’s so sad that the Euros have had to kick off amid unprecedented security.

The attacks in Paris last November must have been weighing on the minds of all those organising the opening match at the Stade De France on Friday night.

With seven million people expected to attend Euro 2016 matches, it’s no wonder there will be 90,000 police, soldiers and private security working hard to keep the fans, the footballers and the staff safe.

London had seven years to get over the 7/7/ attacks – to park a couple of destroyers in strategic places, get some guns on top of tall buildings and engage a private security firm that would bungle their end of the operation.

So well done Uefa for sticking with Plan A. Whatever the results on the pitch, this is a win for France.