The Care Quality Commission yesterday published the first 12 results of 100 unannounced inspections of hospitals across the country.The findings mark significant progress in uncovering the gravity of the problem we have with elderly care in the NHS. Three hospitals failed to meet legal standards for giving patients enough food and drink and treating them in a dignified way.The CQC have said that they expect these initial findings to be representative of the remaining 88 inspections. This suggests that a staggering quarter of all hospitals are likely to fail to meet legal standards.We are frequently approached by patients and their families (often widowed or grieving) seeking redress for the appalling treatment they or their loved one has suffered. Invariably they are not seeking compensation, but wishing to ensure that someone else is not subjected to similar treatment. Often they feel that finding a solicitor is the only way they can feel heard.Complaints of dehydration and malnutrition are not usually sufficient grounds on which to bring a claim, so the litigation process fails to achieve justice for these patients who have been treated with a staggering lack of dignity and respect.With the elderly making up 75% of NHS patients, the recent publication is extremely welcome. I hope that it will be followed by an improvement in standards.Iona Millais is a solicitor specialising in clinical negligence. If you or a member of your family have a clinical negligence enquiry please call our expert clinical negligence solicitors on 0800 916 9049, fill in our short online claim form and one of our specialist clinical negligence team will be in touch.