Published: 19:33, 24 September 2020
| Updated: 20:33, 24 September 2020
Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust has been rated the best performing trust in the country for emergency care - for one week this month.
Each week, the NHS publishes figures on how effective hospital A&Es are in dealing with emergency cases.
In the seven days up to Wednesday, September 16, the A&E departments at Maidstone Hospital and at the Tunbridge Wells Hospital in Pembury admitted and discharged 97% of all patients attending within the Government's four-hour national standard - the best result in the nation that week.
The trust has been hovering near the top for the past 18 months, regularly reporting among the top five hospitals in the southern region.
The trust said meeting the target was the result of changes made by the West Kent healthcare systems over the past year to support improved integrated patient care.
These include a number of changes in the emergency departments at Maidstone Hospital and Tunbridge Wells Hospital, to ensure patients are seen in the right place at the right time by the right person.
They included building a new purpose-built Acute Assessment Unit at Maidstone Hospital to take patients with urgent medical and surgical conditions who have been referred by their GP.
Also it had introduced Same Day Emergency Care to provide speedy access to diagnostic tests, medical and nursing care and discharge home within the same day.
John Clulow, emergency care lead, said: “We are absolutely delighted and extremely proud that we have been recognised as the best performing trust for emergency care in the country.
"It is a remarkable achievement and is down to the sheer hard work and dedication of not only those who work in our Emergency Departments, the wards and the discharge team, but also those working behind the scenes to ensure service changes and improvements happen so we can provide outstanding care to our patients at all times.
“Being treated quickly in any Emergency Department is important for clinical outcomes of patients."