Thursday 1st July - Leadership message from Marcus Bailey, Chief Operating Officer

Marcus Bailey

As you will be aware, demand on our services is increasing at the moment. As this is true across the whole of the NHS, it is also impacting on hospital handovers. We are using social media and our other channels to encourage people to use other services where they can, such as 111, pharmacies and their GPs, as well as recruiting extra people to work within our AOCs. We are managing 10% of our patients through hear and treat, and are also directing around 1,500 patients per week to other sources of help rather than sending an ambulance.

Both I and my colleagues on the Exec Team recognise that this increased demand impacts on people’s working lives. As such, we would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who is working longer hours through late finishes, or is completing additional overtime to support colleagues and the demand management plans we have put in place. We are reviewing any further actions which may be necessary on a daily basis, while also continuing with summer and winter planning.

Monday marks the NHS’s 73rd birthday, which is a great opportunity to celebrate the hard work and dedication of everyone working in the health service. Ahead of that, I again would like to reiterate my thanks for everything you do day in and day out.

As I mentioned earlier, our work to educate the public around how they can best use NHS services is continuing. Last week we held a meeting with some of the MPs in our patch specifically to discuss the pressures on our service. They have told us that they are keen to help get the message out about using NHS services responsibly and we are following up this offer.

We also want to continue to hear from you about how we can best support you. As you may have seen on Need to Know, the national staff survey goes quarterly from this month. This is a positive move as it will give NHS staff a more regular voice. On top of this we also have our own Pulse and harassment surveys to follow in August and September. We appreciate that each survey takes time to complete; however, they are all important in telling us where things are improving as well as where we need to focus more effort. From Monday you'll be invited on Need to Know to take a few minutes to fill in the new National Quarterly Pulse Survey – your views really are the key to making the progress we all want to see within EEAST.

Another way of having your say is through the ‘We are EEAST’ briefings at 4pm every Thursday. You can now submit questions by emailing OCE EEAST. We saw a big increase in questions last week – so please keep them coming.

I also wanted to take to share a thought about the tragic loss of Ian Britten last week, after many years of service in training and caring for patients. From speaking with colleagues, I know that Ian was very highly thought of. I had the pleasure of working with Ian in training, where he was passionate about teaching and had an incredibly dry sense of humour.

Lastly, it’s very important that we make sure that our apprentices and trainees have the best environment in which to learn and develop. As you know, we had an Ofsted inspection on 10 June and will share the outcomes of the report once it is published. This will provide us with another opportunity to reflect on the areas where further work is needed to bring the benefits we all want to deliver for our patients and for each other.

Please keep sharing your thoughts with us. Change takes time, but we will get there together.      

Thank you and stay safe

Marcus Bailey
Chief Operating Officer


Published 1st July 2021