DUDLEY'S four MPs have called for the chairman of the Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust to resign after 'serious failings' were identified at Russells Hall Hospital.

A damning inspection raised a “number of concerns” about the A&E department at the borough's main hospital, forcing the Care Quality Commission (CQC) to step in and take action.

Inspectors for the health watchdog found care records were not always written and managed in a way that kept patients safe and some staff raised concerns regarding the leadership style of some of the executive team, speaking of a poor culture and working environment.

As a result of the inspection on June 28, the CQC has varied conditions on Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust’s registration.

Now, MPs Ian Austin (Dudley South), Mike Wood (Dudley North), Margot James (Stourbridge) and James Morris (Halesowen and Rowley Regis), have sent a letter to the chairman of governors at the trust, Jenni Ord (pictured below), urging her to consider her position, adding: "We feel that the time has come for the trust to benefit from a new chair who would be better placed to give independent challenge to, and oversight of, the executive team as they navigate this difficult terrain."

Dudley News:

The MPs state that they "remain very concerned" about the current position at the hospital as things have "clearly deteriorated" since the A&E department was rated 'inadequate' following an inspection in December last year and the hospital has an overall rating of 'requires improvement'.

The relationship between the leadership team and the clinical staff is also worrying the MPs as some staff in the emergency department told CQC inspectors that they would not be confident about members of their own families being treated there.

Conservative MP James Morris, told the News: "Over recent months there has been considerable concern regarding Russells Hall Hospital, especially in relation to the A&E department.

"There is of course excellent, world class health care that the hospital provides, but as Dudley's MP's we have a duty to hold the trust and it's senior leadership team to account."

He continued: "We were frustrated at the length of time it has taken to address the problems within this particular department, and we would not be doing our jobs properly as local representatives if we did not raise our concerns and ask difficult questions.

"I have met with the chief executive and her senior team several times and I am assured that the department is starting to see improvements, but I will be continuing to keep a very close eye on this issue to ensure that the improvements continue."

Fellow Tory Mike Wood added: “It’s encouraging that the CQC say that they saw some signs of improvement when they inspected the hospital in August, but it’s clear that there is still much more that needs to be done.

“We are very concerned about the safety of our constituents and want to see hospital services greatly improved.

“The challenge for Russells Hall is to get their A&E department up to the high standards that we see in other areas of the hospital.”

Mrs Ord said: "I can confirm that I have received a letter from our four local MPs asking me to consider my position. I absolutely understand the issues we face in our emergency department and I know that the required improvements have not occurred as quickly as the board or our regulators would like.

"However, we are seeing improvements and I remain absolutely committed to ensuring our emergency department is the safest it can be for our patients and I continue to welcome engagement with all our partners including local MPs to help us deliver this."