CQC – Time to shine brighter

You will no doubt have heard by now that we have received our provider information request from the CQC. This gives us notice that our next inspection is approaching. Since our last inspection, the CQC has altered the way it looks at Foundation Trusts so no longer carries out a ‘comprehensive; inspection. Instead, they will be undertaking a ‘well-led’ inspection as well as unannounced visits to core services. Alongside that, they will also look at our ‘use of resources’ along with NHS Improvement.

The thought of a CQC visit can be daunting, but we are in a fantastic position to take this opportunity to show the very best of ourselves and our services once again. In the main, the people from the CQC who will visit us will be just like you and me – keen and enthusiastic clinicians who want to make sure that we provide the highest quality services. They are coming to Newcastle to see how we achieve our outstanding results and to find out what we are challenging ourselves to do next. It’s a great opportunity to shine.

Our provider information will be submitted today (Friday 9th November) and we can expect our visits sometime in the first half of 2019. To reassure you, and help you prepare, the Clinical Governance team is visiting all teams to provide information and answer your questions. You can find more information here and via In Brief: http://nuth-intranet/cms/GeneralInformation/ClinicalGovernanceRiskDepartment/Quality/CQCPreparation.aspx

The NHS long-term plan

The budget last week reinforced the promise of a funding settlement for the NHS in England for the next five years. As you know, the NHS has been asked to develop a long-term plan for the future, setting out our ambitions for improvement over the next decade, as well as detailed plans for the five years of the funding settlement. A number of speeches from Secretary of State, Matt

Hancock, have focussed our minds on the emerging priorities – harnessing technology, focussing on and investing in prevention and importantly – the NHS workforce.

This month I was delighted to lead a workshop with Ian Dalton, Chief Executive of NHS Improvement, looking at the workforce challenges in relation to the NHS long-term plan. In this session we were able to look at the emerging thoughts from the workforce work stream and consider the context of the challenges that the NHS currently faces to balance demand and supply of staff locally. I am confident that the Trust will be able to play an influential role in developing the long-term plan.

Veteran Aware Hospital

As we approach Armistice Day on Sunday, Sir John and I were honoured to receive the Trust’s accreditation as a Veteran Aware Hospital. This recognises our work across the organisation to identify and share best practice and to be an exemplar of the best standards of care for the Armed Forces community. We are among the first hospitals in the UK to achieve this recognition.


Bright Ideas in Health Award finalists

The Bright Ideas in Health Award celebrates local innovations and the staff who have developed innovative ideas. We have five wonderful ideas which have been shortlisted including:

  • Development of a Device or Technology
    Videofluoroscopy Chair,
    Stuart Duffy, Charlotte Buswell, Wendy Wright,
    Simon Richardson and Tony McCormack
  • Innovation Champion of the Year
    The Pop-up Hospital,
    Dr Emma Lim
  • Innovation Champion of the Year
    Development of an online resource to support paediatric asthma care in the north east,
    Dr Jennifer Townshend
    Research Impact: Improving patient care
  • Rob Pickard Impact Legacy,
    Chris Speed
  • Research Impact: Improving patient care
    Improving the Utility of Quantitative MRI in Children and Young people with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis: A Feasibility Study,
    Dr Flora McErlane.

Good luck to all our finalists!

Flourish and Flourish at Christmas

NHS staff wellbeing has been in the news again, and it’s great to see the Secretary of State, Matt

Hancock, promising in a recent interview that he wanted to make it ‘a joy to work in the NHS.’ This is a personal passion of mine and this sentiment is at the heart of our emerging Flourish programme. I would encourage you all to get involved.

Our next Flourish event will take place on Thursday 13 December and is open to all staff. Please try to come along. This session will focus on our values and behaviours and will build on the work of the initial focus group. We will be considering the importance of our core values and how these can influence the behaviours we hope to nurture across the Trust. The session will be led by Martin Wilson, Chief Operating Officer, and will hopefully have a festive theme as well! If you would like to attend the event or contribute any ideas, please email: [email protected]

I’m also excited to be launching our Christmas Giving Campaign – ‘Flourish at Christmas’. We have been working with the Trussell Trust Foodbank in Heaton, which provides food and other essentials to vulnerable families in our city. This year we have been asked to provide men’s and women’s basic underwear (brand new and a range of sizes), some specific toiletries and Christmas chocolate for the vulnerable families in our communities.

It would be lovely if teams could arrange their own collection of these small items to donate. We will arrange for the items to be collected from each hospital site on Friday 14 December, so there is plenty of time to arrange your collection. Giving is one of the ‘five a day for mental health’ it helps us to feel connected to our communities and appreciate what we have. I hope lots of you will join me in giving this year. If you’re taking part, why not tweet about it using the hashtag #flourishatchristmas. I’d also like to thank Sister Cecelia McIntyre from the Institute of Transplantation for developing this wonderful initiative.

Antibiotic Awareness Month

Our antimicrobial team are raising awareness of responsible antibiotic use and the role everyone has in preventing antibiotic resistance during November to coincide with World Antibiotic Awareness Week (Monday 12 – Sunday 18 November). There are banners highlighting the issues sited across the Trust and in our walk-in centres and facts about antibiotics will be shared on social media daily to raise awareness.

Antibiotic resistance is a present and growing problem. The World Health Organisation warns that by 2050 10 million people a year worldwide will die of infections that cannot be treated due to antibiotic resistance. The biggest driver of resistance is antibiotic overuse. The NHS is making tackling antimicrobial resistance a priority.

To coincide with Antibiotic Awareness Month, the team are introducing major changes to respiratory infection guidelines to continue our work to ensure we use antibiotics responsibly. You will be able to find these guidelines advertised on the Intranet during Antibiotic Awareness Month and also view the changes within RxGuidelines – the Trusts platform for antibiotic guidelines. Please make sure that you read these guidelines before prescribing antibiotics.

Careers event

Thank you to all of the staff that gave up their Saturday to welcome prospective colleagues to our Trust.

Over 250 young people and their families joined us for our careers event on Saturday 3rd November.

This was an amazing turnout, and a wonderful opportunity to meet the next generation of colleagues. Thank you to everyone who gave up their Saturday to attend and share your passion.

A particular mention should go to Jessica Mason who arranged the day, having joined us an as apprentice earlier this year. A lovely reflection of career progression in action.

Out and about

Fabulous time spent with our cellular lab staff at the RVI. Amazing skills, passion & innovation displayed by staff.

I am very conscious of the lack of women in leadership positions at the top of the NHS and have always been keen to support emerging female leaders through coaching and other support.

I had a wonderful opportunity on 1 November to share my leadership journey with some local women leaders at a recent event called ‘Brilliance’. Creating space for women to learn and develop together is so important, and it was a pleasure to talk to some of our future leaders and support them in their careers.

I also had a really interesting visit to the integrated laboratory medicine teams at both the Freeman Hospital and the RVI on 30 and 31 October.

Sheila Waugh, Gary Eltringham, Wendy Wipat demonstrating the Molecular Suite transferred
from Public Health England.

This week is Pathology week so it was great to see the complex work and meet the dedicated staff behind this fascinating service. I was struck by the care and attention that the team showed towards their work. Where we might see a sample – or a slide, the team saw a patient very clearly and were dedicated to doing the very best for that person. It was a real joy to visit.

Your views

I really value the time staff are taking to meet me and share their views – and if this briefing has sparked off any ideas for you then I would love to hear them.

Dame Jackie Daniel
Chief Executive