Frontline military healthcare 'exceptional'
25 June 2012
The frontline medical care provided to British military personnel is "truly world class", according to a report by the Care Quality Commission.
The commission inspected land bases in the UK, Germany, Cyprus and Afghanistan, as well as Type 45 destroyers HMS Daring and HMS Dragon and nuclear deterrent submarine HMS Victorious as part of its latest report. While there was high praise for trauma care and general health care, the CQC did have concerns about some aspects of non-frontline care.
The report found notable improvements in most aspects of care provided by Defence Medical Services (DMS) when compared to the results a similar study carried out by the Healthcare Commission in 2009, but had concerns about governance, the recording of information and safeguarding.
Staff training, field hospital design and rehabilitation were all singled out for praise, but there were said to be ongoing issues in primary health care for service personnel and their families
"The buildings where care is delivered remain a major problem, causing deficiencies in the quality of patient care," the report found. "Concerns over safeguarding arrangements were still apparent and documentation and information systems remain in need of improvement, which may have contributed to shortfalls in patient care."
"Our inspectors found that front line treatment of trauma at the field hospital in Afghanistan was the very best that they had witnessed and gave a world class service to our Armed Forces," said CQC chief executive Cynthia Bower. "This is something of which as a country, we can be rightly proud.
"…We also found excellent care in the regional rehabilitation units and in the defence medical rehabilitation centre in the UK."
Surgeon General, Surgeon Vice-Admiral Philip Raffaelli, said: "Although the report demonstrated significant improvements in the DMS since the Healthcare Commission inspection in 2009, there are still areas that could be improved and we will address all the report's recommendations."
The DMS provides healthcare to around 258,000 people, including service personnel, their families and other civilians entitled to care. It encompasses care provided in the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force and supporting units.
HAVE YOUR SAY
26 June 2012
We all know how good the Care Quality Commission assessments are. I live a few miles from Winterbourne View, Bristol.
Scrap this useless body and bring back properly-resourced, competent checks. Oh no, sorry, I forgot the deficit. We'll have to carry on in cloud cuckoo-land.
AlMiles - Bristol, UK
26 June 2012
Really I disagree when my partner who is currently on Deployment in the Gulf with HMS Daring has just had to pay for his own operation, he even had to self admit himself as the Medic on board could not provide him the medical attention he required. This should have been covered by the Navy aswell as the necessary facilities for such things. Considering these poor men and women are at sea for up to a whole Month not acceptable to just to provide pain killers when clearly antibiotics are needed.
anon - Portsmouth