A HOSPITAL boss said last year was ‘very challenging’ – but the quality of care had improved.

Anne Eden said ‘the financial backdrop was difficult and continues to be’ at Buckinghamshire Hospitals NHS Trust.

Yet the trust’s quality of services rating from NHS regulator The Care Quality Commission rose from ‘weak’ to ‘fair’ and ‘good’ over the last three years, she said.

She said at its AGM this week: “I’m delighted to tell you that we did improve the performance of the trust.”

Its score for financial management fell to weak, the worst score.

Ms Eden said ‘quality and safety is at the top of the agenda’ with just two MRSA infection cases shown to have come from trust hospitals.

She said BHT taking on community-based staff from another authority, NHS Buckinghamshire, would ‘simplify’ county healthcare.

And she said a GP-staffed health centre at Wycombe was taking pressure off A&E.

A patient survey found 90 per cent rated their care excellent, very good or good, she said.

Yet the report made no direct mention of the October loss of doctor-led births from Wycombe Hospital. It said it was ‘improving the midwifery-led service’.

And it did not include the loss of major specialities including orthopaedics and respiratory medicine from Amersham Hospital.

Click the links below to read the annual report.