A hospital being investigated by police over its cancer waiting times has been placed in special measures.

Health regulator Monitor acted after data "inaccuracies" meant Colchester General Hospital had breached its licence to provide health services.

The discrepancies were uncovered by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which found staff were "bullied" to alter figures.

Health trust chiefs said they would now be helped to make further improvements.

However, union leaders have called for a change in leadership and said there had been a "loss of confidence" in the trust's board.

'Immediate steps'
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There is a need for a significant change of leadership and we look forward to working with the new regime”

Tracey Lambert
The CQC report found staff were "pressured or bullied" to change information on patients and their treatment to make it seem people were being treated in line with national guidelines.

Monitor said its own formal investigation found the trust had breached its licence after the CQC said cancer care at the trust was inadequate.

It said it worked with CQC and NHS England to "ensure immediate steps were taken to safeguard cancer patients in the care of the trust", to start a review of what had caused the problems and to take action to prevent it happening again.

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