THE trust running Redditch's Alexandra Hospital has been told must make improvements to its urgent and emergency services to ensure people receive better care.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) carried out an inspection at the Worcestershire Royal and the Alexandra Hospital in January following concerns about patient care in its urgent and emergency services.

A recently published report said at both hospitals inspectors found concerns surrounding ambulance handovers, patients receiving timely assessments and care, and they found the departments at both hospitals were overcrowded.

Inspectors gave immediate feedback to the trust about their findings and the CQC has told the trust it must ensure that ambulance handovers are better.

The CQC also said the number of patients cared for in corridors must be reduced.

Professor Ted Baker, CQC's chief inspector of hospitals, said inspectors found services were stretched and overcrowded due to the number of people requiring care.

“This had resulted in people waiting considerable lengths of time to be assessed and treated as well as there being insufficient beds for people to be moved through the hospital," he said.

“As a result we found people having to be cared for in the emergency department corridors.

"The service at both hospitals was obviously challenged and while risks to patients were being assessed, monitored and managed, the situation we found was clearly unacceptable."

Responding to the report, Matthew Hopkins, chief executive of Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, said that the trust has taken action to improve waiting times and reduce ambulance handover waiting times.

“These actions include the opening of additional beds at both the Alexandra and Worcestershire Royal sites," he said.

"That has helped – not least in significantly reducing our need to use non-ward areas to provide inpatient accommodation.

“However, we recognise and share the CQC’s concerns about these issues and we know that we need to do more, and do it quickly."

He added: “We have to change things for the better, and that will require the active support and commitment of teams across our hospitals and well as our partners the local health and care system.”

The trust is currently rated as Inadequate overall and is in special measures.

Both the Worcestershire Royal and Alexandra Hospital are rated as Inadequate overall.