A 10-week improvement project has started in the maternity unit at Stevenage's Lister Hospital, after the Care Quality Commission (CQC) rated the services inadequate.

An inspection report published by the CQC in January raised concerns over safeguarding and standards of care at Lister's Diamond Jubilee Maternity Unit.

Staff "did not always assess risks to women, act on them and keep good care records", "did not manage medicines well" and "equipment was not always well maintained", the report says.

The CQC served a warning notice, meaning the East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust, which runs Lister, has a legal requirement to make improvements to avoid further enforcement action.


A spokesperson for the NHS trust said: "As part of our plans to improve our maternity services, we embarked on an improvement and refurbishment project on March 20 – which could take up to 10 weeks – to enhance the facilities and services we offer.

"During this period, we will be upgrading our facilities in maternity triage, our antenatal Dacre ward, postnatal Gloucester ward and the Bancroft clinic.

"Processes are in place to minimise the impact on the experience of service users whilst improvement work is carried out.

"We apologise for any inconvenience caused during this time. If you have any concerns, please raise these with your midwife, or a member of the maternity team."