3rd November 2022
3 minute read

Cataract care at Romford eye hospital rated ‘outstanding’ by health watchdog 

Patients who attend SpaMedica in Romford for cataract treatment receive ‘outstanding’ care, confirms the hospital’s first inspection by industry regulator the Care Quality Commission (CQC). 

The recent assessment – which granted the hospital the highest possible rating – reported that “outcomes for patients were significantly better than expected when compared with other similar services nationally.” 

An ‘outstanding’ grade was awarded across three separate areas, scoring how effective the services were, how caring they were, and how well the clinic responded to people’s needs.  

Inspectors highlighted the compassion and kindness of staff, who treated patients with privacy and dignity, took into account individual needs, and helped individuals to understand their conditions. They also noted that people did not have to wait long for treatment, and patients, families and loved ones were provided with emotional support. The report highlights that 100% of patients who visited SpaMedica Romford would recommend it to others.  

The Romford site is one of 43 hospitals across England operated by SpaMedica, the UK’s largest provider of NHS cataract surgery. Since the hospital opened last summer, it has performed more than 3,270 NHS cataract surgeries and received multiple 5-star patient reviews on NHS Choices.  

Hospital manager Barbara Armstrong said: “It’s fantastic to be awarded an ‘outstanding’ rating by the Care Quality Commission because it reflects the passion and commitment of the team when it comes to making our patients feel as supported as possible, from the moment they walk through the door.

“We work hard to give an exemplary service to local residents, who may come to us for cataract surgery feeling anxious or apprehensive. While it is a quick and straightforward procedure, we go above and beyond to put people at ease, so it’s hugely rewarding that the inspectors highlighted how we take a genuine interest in our patients and provide extra help where it’s needed.” 

This extra help includes offering patients knitted ‘twiddle squares’ to occupy restless hands and worry beads to keep anxiety at bay – initiatives referenced in the report and introduced by patient co-ordinator Julie Trowell. Julie was named a ‘patient hero’ by SpaMedica for dedicating her spare time to making a difference. 

In addition to ‘outstanding’ ratings for effective, caring and responsive services, the Romford hospital was rated ‘good’ for being safe and well-led. Its overall grading was ‘outstanding’. 

All SpaMedica’s hospitals that have been inspected by the Care Quality Commission to date have been rated as ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’. 

SpaMedica Romford’s inspection report is available to view on the CQC website.Other key findings include:

  • The hospital offered better outcomes than the national average, with patients at SpaMedica Romford two times less likely to experience a complication. 
  • Staff worked well together for the benefit of patients, advised them on how to lead healthier lives, and supported them to make decisions about their care.
  • 100% of patients reported that their surgeon had a good bedside manner, was courteous and friendly, while 99.83% reported feeling reassured during their treatment.
  • The service had enough nursing and support staff with the right qualifications, skills, training and experience to keep patients safe from avoidable harm and to provide the right care and treatment. This includes having 14 dementia champions.
  • Doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals at the hospital worked together as a team to benefit patients. They supported each other to provide good care.

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