Top leadership award for healthcare trust

Alan Richardson, chairman of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.
Alan Richardson, chairman of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.

A regional health body has received prestigious national recognition from the NHS Leadership Academy.

The NHS Leadership Recognition Awards celebrate examples of outstanding leadership that have had a positive impact on both patients and staff.

During the ceremony, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s board received the NHS Governing Body of the Year accolade.

David Evans, chief executive of the trust, said: “We are delighted to receive this national award after such an important year for our trust and after an extremely busy period for our teams.

“The changes we have made to improve patient care and open our new Northumbria hospital would simply not have been possible without the leadership of individuals right across our organisation.

“Delivering change in the NHS is never easy and on behalf of the board, I would like to thank every member of staff for their tremendous efforts over the past 12 months.”

The award has been described as a ‘fitting tribute’ to Brian Flood, who was chairman of Northumbria Healthcare for 18 years and retired in February.

Mr Flood became chairman in 1998 and has contributed enormously to helping the trust revolutionise its services for the people in Northumberland and North Tyneside.

Alan Richardson, the new chairman of Northumbria Healthcare, said: “This award is testament to the achievements of the board and is a true recognition of the hard work and commitment of each and every employee.

“It is also a fitting tribute to Brian Flood, who led the organisation with a real passion and dedicated his career to public services.

“I look forward to leading the trust into this new important chapter and embrace the challenges and opportunities ahead as we strive to continuously improve care for patients.”

Northumbria Healthcare takes a patient-focused approach and aims to provide high quality care for patients, which has been recognised across the region and across the rest of the country and is one of the contributing factors to the trust winning the award.

It is one of only three NHS organisations across the country to help lead with the development of positive cultures and leadership capability across the NHS.

Mike Chitty, head of applied leadership at the NHS Leadership Academy, said: “The judges felt that in these very challenging times, it’s important to show that things need to be done with people not to them.

“This team won because they demonstrated this element beyond doubt in both how they operate as a board and in the outcomes they achieve.

“While we were impressed by the systematic and rigorous way they go about the business of providing excellent and compassionate care, the winners don’t take their eyes off the other stuff that makes the big difference – the small acts of kindness that make all the difference to patients.”

Northumbria Healthcare won the Board Leadership award at the Health Service Journal 2015 Awards for its delivery of outstanding services and it was also named the Best Place to Work in the NHS last year.