OVERALL quality of patient services has improved at Bradford district hospitals in the last year, according to the latest survey results, but they still fail to match national average ratings in many areas.

The Patient-Led Assessments of the Care Environment, or PLACE, report has been released by the Health and Social Care Information Centre following checks on 1,356 hospital sites across the country.

While those in Bradford have generally improved on last year's ratings, in many cases they fall below national average figures for quality.

Three hospitals were assessed in the Bradford district and given ratings for cleanliness, food and hydration, privacy dignity and wellbeing, along with condition appearance and maintenance.

While Bradford's results have improved in many cases, quality levels have gone up across the country and local sites have failed to catch up.

Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is responsible for Bradford Royal Infirmary and St Luke's Hospital.

At BRI, all four categories were scored below the national average though St Luke's performed better, with cleanliness scored above average and food at the national average.

Deputy chief nurse, Sally Scales, said: “These assessments help us to improve the quality of the service that we offer and we have already responded to the areas highlighted as needing improvement in this report by increasing choice in our food menus and undertaking repairs to our estate.

“We are pleased that in three of the four assessed areas, our Trust’s overall scores improved compared to last year’s results and a number of our assessments were above or very close to the national average.

“Work is constantly ongoing within the Trust to enhance our care environment, with the continued involvement of our valued patient assessors, who come from across the Bradford district.”

Airedale NHS Foundation Trust runsAiredale General Hospital, which scored above average for cleanliness at 98.74 per cent.

Food was also above average at 88.92 per cent. Condition, appearance and maintenance scored above average at the site.

But the score for privacy dignity and wellbeing fell below average.

Stacey Hunter, director of operations, said “We are very pleased that almost all of our scores have improved from last year, this is due to the hard work our staff put in, I would like to thank the teams for all their efforts with helping to deliver these improvements to patients and their families.

"The improvement in scores shows us that the investment we are making to our wards is providing a tangible benefit to our patients. This is an on-going piece of work and will remain a top priority.

"This feedback is very important to us as it allows us to see the hospital from a patient’s perspective and we are currently in the process of adding to our PLACE Improvement Plan following this feedback.”

PLACE assessments are carried out using patient assessors and numbers involved were up by 11 per cent nationally, compared to 2013.

The areas assessed are those which have been identified by the public as being important to them as hospital users.