Leadership message from Dr Tom Davis, Deputy Chief Executive and Medical Director

Dr Tom Davis

As you know, the latest Care Quality Commission inspection report was made public yesterday. The CQC’s findings were valid - and hard-hitting. 

I hope you have had the opportunity to read or hear our response, which sets out current and future actions.

From talking to colleagues yesterday via the Teams sessions, it is clear the CQC’s report triggered a range of responses, which is completely understandable. I have heard from colleagues experiencing poor behaviour in the workplace today, and from others who have suffered in the past from ineffective processes and frustrating delays when issues have been raised. There were many questions about staff development, training and the role of secondments. The leadership and our ability to deliver was called out. “What is different this time?” has been a recurring theme. 

Thank you for your honesty. These are the discussions we need to have to create the culture we want, and these topics will be explored in future engagement and the new cultural survey which will be with you shortly.

I know you are surveyed a lot, and the NHS National Staff Survey is out next week, but they are really important. One of the main benefits of a survey is the ability to track trends, to see impact over a longer-term. Another benefit is being able to compare ourselves to similar organisations, providing a benchmark on what we are doing well, and where we can improve. So I know surveys can be frustrating, and they are not the only method we use, but they do make a difference.

Providing you with a confidential and independent route to speak up is also important. That's why we have appointed a permanent full time Guardian. Janice joined us recently from outside the Trust, and you may already have heard her talk about moving the Trust to a more open, transparent and honest culture. During October, there will be a number of opportunities to engage with your Guardian and these will be advertised in Need to Know.

To end, I just want to mention some of the other feedback I heard from staff about the CQC report. A number of you said we mustn’t lose sight of the many positives here at EEAST, like the care we provide and our working relationships.

That was really good to hear. Our ambition now is to address the culture, leadership and governance problems quickly - and protect our performance and work life-balance - so the balance tips permanently towards the positive.  

Dr Tom Davis
Deputy Chief Executive and Medical Director


Published 1st October 2020

Message on behalf of Dr. Tom Davis

Hello David,
Thank you for your question.
To confirm, our chief executive Dorothy was on planned leave last week when the Care Quality Commission published their report. I led the staff engagements last week and confirmed this during a number of online sessions. During those engagements, I also explained that the final date of publication is fixed by the CQC, with the Trust given a few days notice to plan staff engagement and other communication activity.

With regard to the newspaper article, the response which is quoted was provided by our media team in relation to our Chair, not the Chief Executive, as our Chair Nicola Scrivings was leading the media response on the day of publication given Dorothy was on annual leave.

Thank you and I hope this clarifies your questions.

The Communications Team
06 October 2020

Message on behalf of Dr. Tom Davis

Dear Jason - thank you for taking the time to write, especially as your comments are more positive than many I have received over the past few days. Like you, I believe that we can and will build a positive culture here, one that will provide a better experience for our staff, and even better care for our patients. To do this, we all need to play our parts, and it is reassuring to know that you are fully onboard and up for the challenge. Thanks again for writing in.

The Communications Team
06 October 2020

Apparently the Eastern Daily Press requested an interview with the CEO but were told by a "spokesman" that she was busy “communicating with and supporting our staff and implementing our response to the CQC report”. That article was on 1st October.
You now state that she is actually on "planned leave".
In line with our commitment to having "transparency at the centre of everything we do", which statement is correct please?

05 October 2020

Hi Ben,

Dorothy is currently on planned leave.

The Communications Team

The Communications Team
02 October 2020

Thank you for your open and honest words of optimism for the future. The report is hard-hitting and, in my opinion, inequitable and totally detached from the organisation I'm proud to belong to. By definition, cultural change can be a timely process but I'm confident we will create a modern culture with a balanced quality of life for our staff and our communities we serve. Teamwork and respect for all.
02 October 2020

Where is Dorothy?
01 October 2020

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