Trust is sixth most transparent in UK

Health chief Andrew Foster with senior hospital doctors

Health chief Andrew Foster with senior hospital doctors

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Health bosses are celebrating after Wigan’s hospital trust was rated as outstanding for its transparency.

The Department of Health has published its first Learning from Mistakes league table which ranks trusts on their openness and honesty and Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Trust (WWL)has been ranked as the sixth best in the country.

It is also one of only 18 trusts nationally achieving a ranking of outstanding.

Andrew Foster, WWL’s chief executive, said: “This is truly excellent news and rewards what we hope to achieve from our open and honest culture.

“I would like to congratulate everyone at WWL as every member of staff has played a big part in this and it really is a whole organisation effort.

“You are all outstanding; this is a testament to your commitment and dedication. The results demonstrate that quality and putting patient safety first are built into our culture at WWL and that we really do learn from our mistakes.”

He said that at WWL, they believe that it is essential to take all concerns seriously and investigate them properly, enabling them to provide the best standard of care and treatment to their patients.

“Concerns and complaints are a standard agenda item at our trust board, where every month the Executive Board watches a video of a patient or staff story,” he added.

“This is hugely important, as by listening to the stories the Executive Board are then able to take strategic action to deliver improvements for our patients.

“We encourage a culture where raising concerns is normal practice and foster an environment where they are taken seriously and investigated properly.

“It is also very reassuring that our staff feel confident and secure in reporting unsafe clinical practice and feel able to contribute towards improvements at work. This can only help us to provide the best quality of care for our patients.”

Alison Balson, director of workforce, said: “I am really thrilled and proud of WWL’s success and coupled with the excellent results we received in the recent staff survey shows that WWL is a really fabulous trust.

“I echo Andrew’s sentiments that this really is a testament to the whole organisation and our staff.”

Pauline Law, acting director of nursing, added: “We always state that we are open and transparent at WWL and that we report everything ‎with absolute candour.

“This result clearly proves it. Our staff are obviously confident in reporting and speaking out whenever they witness something that could put a patient at risk of harm.

“They do this in the clear knowledge that there is no risk of reprisal and that their concerns will be acted upon.”

Department of Health has introduced a league table to encourage openess and transparency in the NHS.

Data from the 2015 NHS Staff Survey and the the National Reporting and Learning System in 2015/16 has been used to rank each NHS trust on their transparency for the Learning from Mistakes league launched yesterday by Monitor and the NHS Trust Development Authority.

The league table has been drawn together by giving providers scores based on the fairness and effectiveness of procedures for reporting errors, near misses and incidents, staff confidence and security in reporting unsafe clinical practice and the percentage of staff who feel able to contribute towards improvements at their trust.