A WARD at Fairfield Hospital has secured a top nursing distinction for its attention to detail for patients.

Medical directors and the Chief Nurse for the Northern Care Alliance were among a panel which assessed Ward 8, which deals with respiratory medicine.

Under a system known as NAAS (Nursing Assessment and Accreditation System), units are required to ensure their services are 'safe, clean, and personal every time'.

This is known as a SCAPE accreditation and Helen Carter, the associate director for assurance and quality for the Pennine Acute NHS Trust, told board members Ward 8 met the stringent criteria.

"Patient feedback was very complimentary and the panel felt that they could see high levels of patient engagement in the individual care they deliver," she said in a board report.

But staff on Ward 10, the critical care unit at Fairfield, were told they would have to reapply later in the year to achieve the same standing.

Mrs Carter said while there was "clear evidence" of high standards of patient care", there was a "significant lack of medical leadership" and "effective multidisciplinary support" to mean the unit qualified under the SCAPE assessment this time around.

She told the board the unit had been advised to apply again in nine to 12 months time.