Shooting Star Children’s Hospices are thrilled to announce that our Guildford-based hospice, Christopher’s, has been given the highest possible overall rating of ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission following an inspection this May 2022.

The independent regulator of all health and social care services in England give organisations one of four overall ratings following an inspection, ranging from ‘inadequate’, ‘require improvement’, ‘good’ to the top accolade of ‘outstanding’.

The CQC undertook this inspection as part of a random selection of services rated Good and Outstanding to test the reliability of their new monitoring approach.

The inspection at Christopher’s, focused on five areas: whether the service is safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led. The Hospital Inspection Team spoke to families, staff, and volunteers, toured the hospice, observed care and support activities; and checked records, policies, and procedures. The findings of the inspection were published on 20 July 2022 on the CQC website.

In the report, the CQC summarised the reasoning for the hospice to remain as an outstanding rating; “Staff treated children and young people with compassion and kindness, respected their privacy and dignity, and helped them understand their conditions. They provided emotional support to children and young people, families and carers and went above and beyond what was expected to provide support. Children, young people, and families were truly respected and valued and empowered as partners in their care. Staff were highly motivated and inspired to provide care that is kind and promotes dignity. Staff found innovative ways to meet the totality of children, young people, and their family’s needs. Children, young people, and families were active partners in their care and staff empowered them to have a voice and realise their potential.”

Geraldine Sheedy, Head of Hospices Services at Shooting Star Children’s Hospices said, “The bar for an outstanding rating for children’s hospices has been raised to reflect the overall quality of care in this sector, so for us to retain our overall outstanding rating since our last inspection is a huge achievement.

“My personal thanks to everyone across the team in preparing for the inspection, providing the evidence to show how our service goes above and beyond and to those who spoke with the inspection team on the day – it could not have been possible without them.”

Paul Farthing, Chief Executive of Shooting Star Children’s Hospices said, “This report is the best possible evidence of the quality and commitment of the care we provide to families across Surrey and west London. We’re thrilled to read such positive feedback and I’m immensely proud of the standard of care we deliver. I want to say a huge thank you to the staff and volunteers at Shooting Star Children’s Hospices, and in particular to our care team for their dedication to making every moment count for children with life-limiting conditions and their families. Thanks must also go to our wonderful supporters and partners who make our work possible.”