THE Redditch MP has welcomed the latest hospitals inspection but admitted there is still a long way to go providing first class services.

The Advertiser reported last week that Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust is set to come out of special measures for the first time in four years.

It is now rated as ‘requires improvement’ rather than ‘inadequate’.

Matthew Hopkins, who took over at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust in January, said the improvements, highlighted in the latest (CQC) Care Quality Commission report, were “phenomenal”.

He said improving quality of care and “reducing costs and managing finances better” is a key focus going forward, admitting “we’ve got a lot to do” for the latter.

Rachel Maclean, MP for Redditch, paid tribute to the hardworking doctors, nurses and all of the trust’s healthcare professionals.

“My constituents have waited far too long for the trust to emerge from special measures," she said.

"Of course I welcome the CQC’s decision to rate the trust as ‘requires improvement,’ but I know how much further there is still to go until the trust is providing first class services."

“The CQC’s report also found progress was being made at the Alex. Inspectors said the hospital’s outpatient services supported patients to make informed decisions about their care. I’d also like to highlight that the inspectors witnessed an area of outstanding practice at the Alex’s diagnostic imaging department where they found staff ‘routinely exceeded’ patient expectations.

She added: “Along with my fellow Worcestershire MPs, we have worked tirelessly to support the trust and to do everything we can to ensure services improve. We’ve often been critical, and I certainly have, but that’s because we demand better for our constituents.

“We will now continue to work with the trust as a system-wide package is agreed with NHS England to ensure the trust is able to continue to build on the progress already made. There can be no going backwards.”