We Are EEAST Briefing - 18th February 2021


We Are EEAST Briefing from Thursday 18th February, featuring Acting Chief Executive Dr Tom Davis and Director of Finance Kevin Smith 


So, I wanted to start by sharing some really positive engagement that I was part of last week with the regional NHS leaders’ senior group, in which Prince William joined us to share his thoughts on the work that the NHS is doing in the pandemic. In particular, he wanted all the Chief Executives to pass on their thanks to all their staff and volunteers for the huge efforts that are being made to support the country during the pandemic.


So please go to Need to Know where you will see more details on the Princes engagement with a number of the regions across the country, but as I say, last week he joined the regional directors that I attend weekly. And I think some of the things that he focused on in addition to the care that is being provided through the health and social sectors, was the massive effort of the vaccination program. We have played no small part in that, and it’s great to see figures of 90% of our staff being vaccinated, and a significant number of our volunteers also.


He also talked, and it’s a really important focus of his, but also of the NHS at the moment, is the mental and physical wellbeing of our staff, and how we can look to ensure that support is not only available now but is planned and available to people over the coming years, when as we’ll all be reading, the impact of the pandemic is expected to continue.


But I think please go and take a look at the messages, and as I say, it is a huge honour for me to pass on the thanks of the Prince that he was kind enough to take the time to bring to us last week.


On thank note of thanks, it’s really important to remember that we continue to deliver quality care to our patients on a daily basis. In the week of the 28th January - 4th February we received 76 compliments from patients and families, sharing their thanks and asking us to pass those thanks on to the teams that cared for them. That’s a fantastic number of compliments, and our ratio of compliments to complaints continues to improve, and on a regular basis we are now receiving ten compliments for every complaint. Both equally as important to learn from an organisational perspective, but absolute recognition that we are maintaining a quality of care, especially in these challenging times.


I’m just going to show you as well on the screen, our latest publication of our CQC action plan and progress. We’ve made strong progress since we were placed in special measures in October, and this latest update that will be available on Need to Know, covers the actions that we are taking around bullying and harassment, governance and our Covid-19 response.


We recognise and did so with our regulators a few weeks ago, that a number of the actions we have taken and addressed quickly have been around policy and governance, and we were able to move rapidly through this stage. I think we now need to recognise that in some ways a greater challenge lies ahead, with change likely to take longer to deal with, and we’re absolutely committed to ensuring this initial progress is followed by further work that helps us to embed and sustain the changes that we have made and would like to continue making.


We’re definitely moving in the right direction and the organisation remains committed, and I see that when I speak to people across the organisation and to our external partners, that we’re committed to change as well as continuing our excellent care.


Thanks Tom, apologies for being slightly late, I was chairing the compliance and risk group which is obviously a very important group that we have to ensure that we are on track with everything. So, I’m sure some of those things that we’re on track with you’ve covered, and there’s lots of good progress going on.


I don’t think there’s anything particularly that I wanted to add. I guess just from a finance point of view, that things are very unclear for future arrangements for the NHS, although we will expect obviously that the government will continue to fund us, but we don’t know what our funding is, but we have our plans in place for what we need to spend, and we’ve got support from NHS England on those, so I think that’s probably all I’ll like to mention at this point and happy to look at any questions with you.

Published 22nd February 2021