CQC rating: Outstanding

Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has been rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

The CQC published its rating on 20 April 2016 following announced and unannounced inspection visits in December 2015.

Western Sussex is only the third acute trust in the country to be rated Outstanding.


The CQC rated the overall standards of care our patients receive as Outstanding, and gave the same grade to our accident and emergency department, medical care, end-of-life care, maternity, gynaecology and children’s services.

The CQC assesses health organisations on five key measures, asking whether they are:

  • Safe
  • Effective
  • Caring
  • Responsive
  • Well-led

Western Sussex was awarded an Outstanding grade for being effective, caring and well-led, and was marked Good for safety also.


We were rated as Requires Improvement in the responsive category as a result of our referral-to-treatment (RTT) times.

However, the inspectors recognised that we had a clear understanding of the issues we faced and robust plans in place to address them.

We did not receive a single Enforcement Action identifying specific areas in which improvement needs to be made, just two Requirement Notices (around availability of pressure-relieving equipment and fridge storage of medicines) and 16 ‘should’ actions.

Hospital results


St Richard’s and Worthing Hospitals were both rated Outstanding.

Southlands was rated as Good, but was only inspected in two areas – surgery and outpatients – and achieved exactly the same standards as St Richard’s and Worthing in these.

You can read more about the individual hospital reports via the following links:

Service results

The services inspected by the CQC were:

  • Urgent and Emergency Care
  • Medical Care (including Older People)
  • End-of-Life Care
  • Surgery
  • Critical Care
  • Outpatients and Diagnostics
  • Maternity and Gynaecology
  • Children and Young People’s Services

Urgent and Emergency Care, Medical Care, Maternity & Gynaecology, Children & Young People’s Services and End-of-Life Care were all rated Outstanding at both St Richard’s and Worthing. Surgery and Outpatients & Diagnostics were rated Good at all three hospitals sites.

Critical Care was given a Requires Improvement grading at both St Richard’s and Worthing.

The full report is published on the CQC website – www.cqc.org.uk/provider/RYR/reports

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