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Health chiefs salute Eastern Cheshire cancer and maternity services

Health chiefs salute Eastern Cheshire cancer and maternity services
17 August 2018

Cancer care and maternity services in Eastern Cheshire have been rated outstanding in a national assessment.

The verdicts were delivered by NHS England after an examination of services we planned and bought in 2017-18.

Now, we have thanked colleagues and partners, including East Cheshire NHS Trust, for providing excellent care against the standards we set.

Cancer care was measured against the following criteria:

  • Early diagnosis
  • Percentage of patients starting treatment within 62 days of referral
  • Percentage of patients surviving cancer for at least a year
  • Patient experience of care.

Maternity services were rated on the following indicators:

  • Stillbirth and neonatal mortality rate
  • Women’s experience of care
  • Availability of choice of service
  • Percentage of women smoking at delivery.

Eastern Cheshire outstripped national averages and targets on all four cancer measures and three of the four maternity criteria. The CCG was marginally below national average on stillbirth and neonatal mortality rate.

The four measures of cancer care were based on priorities agreed by the Cancer Transformation Board, led by Cally Palmer, national cancer director for England. The maternity criteria were chosen in line with various themes from Better Births, a report by the National Maternity Review.

Dr Paul Bowen, our clinical chair and GP with McIlvride Medical Practice, Poynton said: “Outcomes and experience of care for both expectant mums, and for people with cancer, rely not just on high-quality specialist services but on collaboration between all the NHS, good access to support, and caring local staff. I’m proud of all parts of the local NHS in achieving this national recognition.”

East Cheshire NHS Trust provides most secondary cancer and maternity services in Eastern Cheshire.

Chief Executive John Wilbraham said: "We are delighted that our staff and services have helped contribute to this very positive external feedback. Coming after the trust's recent 'Good' rating from the Care Quality Commission and a number of other awards and achievements, it shows that Eastern Cheshire patients can have confidence in their local NHS services." 

Editors' notes:

The assessments of cancer and maternity services were undertaken by independent panels of experts selected by NHS England. Using clinical indicators from the Improvement and Assessment Framework for CCGs, the ratings provide a comparable snapshot of CCG performance. Each CCG is given one of four ratings: Outstanding, Good, Requires Improvement, Inadequate.

The CCG was marginally below national average on stillbirth and neonatal mortality rate. However, the area performed so strongly on the other measures that it warranted a rating of outstanding overall.

Of cancer patients referred by their GP, 90.1 per cent started treatment within 62 days, against a national standard of 85 per cent; while patients gave their overall experience an average rating of 8.9 out of 10, against a national average of 8.74.

The proportion of patients surviving cancer for at least a year was 73.7 per cent against a national ambition of 72.4 per cent; while 57 per cent of cancers were diagnosed at an early stage, compared with a national ambition of 53.5 per cent.

Experience of maternity services was rated highly by 87.8 per cent of women, against a national average of 83 per cent; while the rate of maternal smoking at delivery was 7.1 per cent, compared with a national ambition of 9.7 per cent.

Choice of maternity services was rated highly by 64.2 per cent of women, compared with 60.8 per cent nationally; while there were five stillbirths or neonatal deaths per 1,000 births, against a national average of 4.8.