I have been in post a couple of weeks now and the first thing I want to do is to say thank you for the warm welcome I have received from everyone I have met. Before taking up the role I was a Non Executive member of the Board of Directors for about 15 months so I did know that this is a really friendly Trust to work for and I have certainly not been disappointed.
Being a Non-Executive helped me build an understanding of the organisation and some of the challenges it faces, and I was here when the CQC inspection took place which clearly identified a number of areas that we have to address in terms of quality and safety.
Fundamentally, I see the role of Medical Director as helping professional colleagues and the organisation to succeed. As the Responsible Officer for Revalidation, I have a duty to promote and uphold the highest standards of professional behaviour among our employed doctors. But for me, clinical care is very much a team sport and to be successful we must work together in integrated multi-professional teams right across the hospital, the community and the whole system.
There are quite a few clinical priorities that have emerged over the past year or so, through our own analyses and through regulatory and peer inspections.. We have a draft clinical strategy which is a great base from which to start and I will work to crystallise the main priorities and get them implemented as soon and as effectively as possible.
Each division and department have defined their own internal priorities, but there are some which have the potential to impact on a much wider scale. For example, I believe that if we are able to improve capability and capacity in some of our unscheduled care pathways such as respiratory and stroke this will improve patient care, reduce length of stay and improve flow through the hospital and so help people stay healthier for longer in the community.
If we make improvements to unscheduled care pathways the hospital should run more smoothly. Improvements in the way we use our bed base create opportunities to increase capacity for our surgical colleagues and thereby reduce waiting times for the patients we serve.
ONE area of particular focus for me is clinical engagement. I have re-established the Medical Leadership Forum in order to bring the most senior doctors across the organisation together to consider how best we can help to take things forward. Another focus will be to support our role in educating and training our future multi-professional workforce. That is entirely in the spirit of our name: Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS FT.
Medical engagement was highlighted in the recent CQC Report as an area of concern. We know that good communication is fundamental to providing great care, and it behoves all of us to engage openly, honestly and kindly. We recently undertook a medical engagement survey and we have some preliminary results which show that engagement levels can be improved. For me this is a key performance indicator and I am determined to improve this.
Once we get the full results of the survey we will share the findings and draw up plans to make the improvements necessary. Finally, what I observe is a fantastically dedicated and hard-working set of colleagues. Thank you for
everything you do and I hope I can really contribute to our shared endeavours.
Finally I would like to thank everyone for all your hard work and dedication.