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Mar 2024_6_CEO report

Chief Executive’s Report – March 2024

National and system update

NHS England has published a new Leadership Competency Framework following on from the updated Fit & Proper Persons Framework released last autumn. Board members will be required to self-assess against the six domains as part of their next appraisal and identify any development needs. This is being incorporated into Executive Director appraisals taking place in the coming weeks. A summary of these appraisals will be shared with the Nominations & Remuneration Committee in June 2024.

Towards the end of last month NHS England announced the first phase of the introduction of Martha’s Rule, which is to be formally implemented from April 2024. Once implemented, all patients, relatives, carers and colleagues will have access to a rapid review from a separate clinical team if they have concerns regarding an individual’s care. In BHT, our Critical Care Outreach team have been leading on a successful pilot Call 4 Concern model, and we look forward to expanding this to ensure all patients and their loved ones have access to this important service should they wish to.

At the time of writing this report we are preparing to do our first full submission of our Trust Operating Plan for the year ahead as part of the annual business planning cycle. This includes a commitment to deliver key performance targets across emergency, cancer, diagnostic and elective care, a financial position of £47.7m deficit for BHT, and a reduction in our temporary and substantive workforce.

Outstanding care

Key performance data are reported in the Integrated Performance Report with supporting narrative, and at the time of writing this report we are working towards key end of year targets set by NHS England in cancer, diagnostic, elective and urgent care. Raghuv Bhasin (Chief Operating Officer) will be able to provide an updated position to the Board in the meeting on 27 March.

In December 2023, our amazing radiology team performed the first UK case of electrochemotherapy for radio-resistant spinal epidural metastases, and in February the team were able to see significant tumour regression in follow up imaging. It is always humbling to be reminded of some of the world-class clinical talent we are fortunate enough to have at BHT, and the incredible difference they make to patients in our care.

Congratulations also to our Research & Innovation team for their inaugural BRAInWAVE event, which featured lots of exciting sessions exploring the possibilities of virtual reality and artificial intelligence in the future of healthcare, alongside plenty of inspiration in medical technology. The day was a fantastic opportunity to think about how digital technology will be advancing so many aspects of health and care in the coming years.

Healthy communities

At the start of the month our Research and Innovation team led a Health & Wellbeing day in High Wycombe, offering free health checks, health and wellbeing advice, and the opportunity to speak with the Breast Unit team, or take part in health and care research.

Our Health on the High Street unit in Friar’s Square, Aylesbury, is now also offering quick health and blood pressure checks to all colleagues, alongside the services it already offers the public.

Congratulations to our Breast Unit team at Wycombe Hospital who have been awarded the Scannappeal Shining Star Award. The team have supported Scannappeal for many years through team members taking on various fundraising challenge events, selling books, Christmas cards and raising awareness about the charity. Scannappeal has fundraised for various state of the art equipment for the department including over £1.3 million to help fund digital mobile screening equipment, 3D technology, biopsy guidance system and a dedicated biopsy suite.

Last month I informed the Board that our Amersham Hospital Garden Volunteers were shortlisted in the Unsung Hero Awards, and I am delighted to update that they were named the winners earlier this month. A fitting recognition of their exemplary generosity and community service.

Great place to work

This month we wished all our Muslim colleagues ‘Ramadan Mubarak’ as the month of Ramadan began, and our chaplaincy team distributed gift bags to support colleagues during this period, which included a disposable prayer mat, prayer booklet, and Ramadan prayer and fasting guide. We have already received positive feedback from several colleagues, so I am pleased that these have been welcomed and appreciated.

At the start of this month it was National Careers Week. Our People directorate were busy raising the profile of NHS careers in our local communities and inspiring young people: Bridget O’Kelly (Chief People Officer) launched the week with an assembly at Holmer Green Senior School, our schools engagement team ran drop-in sessions at Princes Risborough School, and lots of colleagues representing the variety of careers available in healthcare were present during the Bucks Skills Show at Stoke Mandeville Stadium. My thanks to everyone involved for their commitment and enthusiasm.

The appraisal window opens on 1 April 2024, and in preparation for this the Organisational Development team are out and about talking about the importance of appraisals and the value of quality conversations, both in the appraisal and through regular one-to-one meetings during the year.

Huge congratulations to Alka Pandey (Specialist Diabetes Dietitian) who won the ‘Promising Professional’ award at the Inspiring Indian Women Awards earlier this month.

Finally, I would like to apologise for any inconvenience our patients and visitors may have experienced at our two acute hospital sites in recent weeks. At Wycombe Hospital part of our car park has been closed off for safety reasons, and the remaining staff and patient parking spaces have had to be slightly reconfigured. We have also been undertaking some substantial building works at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, which has led to some disruption particularly near Car Parks B and C. We greatly appreciate the public’s patience and understanding during this time.


Appendix 1 – Trust CARE values awards

Appendix 2 – Executive Management Committee and Transformation Board