Board Matters - November 2014

NHS
 
 
Board Matters
Welcome to Board Matters
The appointment of Simon Pleydell as permanent chief executive was announced at the meeting. I thanked the Board for their understanding through this period of change and noted the important milestone that this was for the organisation.
 
The Board heard how the Trust would be marking Armistice Day  on 11 November by gathering to observe the two minute silence at 11am in the hospital main entrance. Trust colleagues, patients and visitors were encouraged to join us if they could. I also announced that I would be attending Islington Council's remembrance service on Sunday 9 November.
 
We always aim to answer questions from our community at the Trust Board meeting, however, on occasions we may need to gather additional information to give a full answer.  When this happens, we will now come back to you as soon as possible.
 
I attended an event to mark Black History Month, organised by Eddie Kent, on Friday 31 October. The event was very entertaining and well attended, featuring Caribbean and African food, music and health information talks.
Steve Hitchins
Chair of Whittington Health
 
 
I would like to hear your thoughts
 
If you have any comments or views on any agenda items, please get in touch by clicking on the ‘email Steve’ button below or give me a ring on 0780 1106860.
 
Patient story   1
Mary Price, lead for health promotion and expert patient programmes, introduced the patient story and detailed the different self-management programmes the Trust runs for people who have long-term health conditions. She said the team is recognised nationally as innovators, leaders and experts in the field and has recently won some awards.

Mary gave the background to this month’s patient, Emine, and explained how the treatment of long-term conditions is managed and the benefits of self-management programmes in supporting people to manage their conditions better and feel more in control. They look at the impact on a person's health condition and develop their knowledge and confidence.

Emine took part in one of the expert patients programme after being diagnosed with diabetes and depression. She told the Board it had helped her to live better with her long-term health condition. She said: "It did change my life. I felt empowered. We spoke about different aspects of our conditions. By talking to other people we found other techniques that I could use, something that the other person had used". On attending the sessions, she said: "You all have one thing in common, you've all taken that one step. You might meet somebody else that has what you've got and they might be able to talk to you in a way that would help you and maybe you could help that person".
Self management
patient Emine
 
2   Chief executive's report
Simon Pleydell
Following Simon's recent appointment as chief executive, he told the Board that he was delighted to accept the job and felt there were many  opportunities for him to add value to the organisation. Simon reinforced his commitment to ensuring the Trust had a viable and sustainable future. He updated the Board on the director of finance post recruitment, saying we hope to make an appointment in the near future.
 
Simon told the Board about our latest figures for staff vaccination against flu, which were ahead of target. Last year we were the first London Trust to vaccinate 75 per cent of colleagues, this year we hope to exceed this.
 
Simon noted the publication of the NHS Five Year Forward View which was published on 23 October 2014. It sets out a vision for the future of the NHS and has been developed by NHS England, Public Health England, Monitor, Health Education England, the Care Quality Commission and the NHS Trust Development Authority.  The report says the NHS needs to change over the next five years if it is to close the widening gaps in the health of the population, quality of care and the funding of services.
 
Simon clarified the Trust's position around applying to become a Foundation Trust (FT) following some misleading press coverage. We have ambition to become an FT. We need a clear strategy, solid finances and business plan in place, alongside a stable and senior team to support us with this process.
 
 
Winter plans   3
The health service must show that it can deliver high quality care throughout the winter, there is considerable work going on across London to achieve this. The Board heard about the extensive plans in place to cope with additional pressures on our services throughout winter.
 
We have received funding to open extra winter beds and our ambulatory care centre is fully operational for the first time this winter, supporting  the emergency department and enabling patients to go home earlier.  Our emergency department (ED) has been strengthened to ensure more staff and extra support at peak times and in the community we have a virtual ward and children’s hospital-at-home service to care for people in their own homes.
 
Our district nursing team, community matrons and specialist nursing team are also working closely with GPs, care homes and extra care sheltered accommodation to prevent admissions to hospital where they are not required. The Board also heard how a new team in the community, the integrated community ageing team (ICAT), with a consultant geriatrician and specialist GP, is supporting patients over 75 stay in their own homes, rather than being admitted to hospital.
Plans in place for winter
 
4   Strategy update
The next five years
An event involving The King's Fund on our overall strategy was well attended by colleagues across the organisation and some of our key partners.  Five key areas of opportunity and development were highlighted for us to support further development of integrated care, which they believed would have the greatest impact. For details please see the paper.
 
A Clinical Strategy Group have continued to meet and look at our vision, mission, values. Along with a range of feedback from  colleagues, key stakeholders and the community, this will provide the foundation to write the new clinical strategy by mid-December and ultimately our Integrated Business Plan by March 2015.
 
A number of engagement events for our  local community are also taking place, called ‘health conversations’. They are for our local community and anyone interested in Whittington Health, to give their health priorities, concerns and suggestions. The first one took place on 4 November.
 
Nurse recruitment   5
The Board heard about the successful nurse recruitment that has taken place recently.

Overseas recruitment: From Portugal, 12 nurses joined the Trust at the beginning of November with a further two due to join early December. From the Philippines, the Trust has appointed 32 nurses and the first cohort of Filipino nurses will start early January.  All overseas nurses attend a two week induction programme which provides specialised support and local information for them.

Local recruitment: At the beginning of November the Trust had more than 50 nurses going through the recruitment process. A further 14 band five staff nurses are due to start in the next couple of months.

Adverts for further roles and further nursing recruitment events are scheduled.
 
Staffing levels
 
6   Our financial performance
 
Finance update
The Board heard that our financial position at the end of September was a concern, with a £5.3m deficit.
 
The deficit is a combination of income underperformance and expenditure pressures. We have held meetings with our commissioners following lower than expected income on a ‘block’ contract.
 
Our agency spending has reduced, however, we are still behind with our cost improvement plans. The Trust is continuing to tighten its grip on spending and is reviewing a range of initiatives to help reverse our position including areas of external contract management.

We are still forecasting a  balance position at the end of the financial year but as this approaches, this is looking increasingly unlikely.
 
 
   
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