NURSES have been praised for their outstanding efforts in turning around the fortunes of Basildon Hospital.

Ruth May, chief nurse for the East of England, visited the hospital, in Nethermayne, after it came out of special measures and was rated good by the Care Quality Commission.

She spent time with head of nursing and midwifery, Diane Sarkar, and heard about improvement initiatives, including increased staff levels and a reduction in patient falls and pressure ulcers.

Other initiatives included putting up “You said...we did” boards and performance data to keep patients and visitors up to date.

Mrs May said: “It’s just wonderful to see the transformation that has taken place. I first came to this hospital in 2009 and it’s now a very, very different place. It’s got superb nursing leadership, but also great depth to its nursing leadership and they are working as one team. There isn’t a weak link here.”

The trust was put into special measures by Monitor in July 2013, following the Keogh Review into hospitals with higher than average death rates, but staff have worked hard to drive up standards since.

Mrs Sarkar added: “I was really proud to be able to show the chief nurse the huge changes which have taken place to nursing in our hospital.

“We have made great strides in recent years, making sure that our patients are at the heart of everything we do. I’m confident that the people of Basildon now have access to the best nursing and midwifery care care the NHS has to offer.”