8 June 2017 CEO Blog post

Which are we?

I’ve had a few days off. As well as spending copious amounts of time applying sun cream to children, I got the chance to think.

Just as I went on leave we had two amazing pieces of news. The first was the removal of our breach of licence. For almost all staff and certainly our patients this means nowt. However it is a clear indication from our regulator that we have improved. Our waiting times are better and, just as importantly, they recognise that our culture is improving.

Secondly we heard what we had privately hoped – namely that we were first in the country in the inpatient survey results. This is brilliant news and something the whole hospital can be proud of.

I also got a letter just before my holiday from a patient. Someone who has been working with us for a while. The patient was frustrated, thinks we don’t take patient engagement seriously and suggests we are complacent.

At a recent clinical audit meeting I heard one of our senior doctors, one of our best, talk about a procedure he had carried out on a patient that didn't go as well as it could. He was humble, reflective and had made improvements so it was much less likely to ever happen again. Most importantly he told his senior colleagues so they could learn from him.

So, on holiday I tried to work out which one we are? Brilliant (even at times the best) or maybe arrogant?

So, my conclusion? In reality I don’t think we are either.

It's about continuous improvement. It's about dogged determination to learn, to improve, and to do even better. But, it’s also about recognising when we do well. If we can understand what and why we do things well, then we can understand how and why we can do things better.

An example of that dogged determination came to mind today. One of my director colleagues, a patient and some of our fabulous MCSI staff are doing the “Snowdon Push”. The Push involves teams of between 10 and 16 people aiming to conquer the highest mountain in England and Wales.  One member of the team must be a wheelchair user and so as a team, this means pushing, pulling, climbing and wheeling to the summit and back down again, covering about eight miles of mixed terrain.

So, taking inspiration from our Snowdon Push team, we will continue to come together, pushing and pulling and constantly striving to do better over our mixed terrain. We don’t have a summit and that feeling of ‘we’ve done it’, so for now we will keep focussed on the journey. We will celebrate the ‘ups’ and learn from the ‘downs.’ Above all, we will keep at it.   

Donate to our Snowdon Push team here.


Mark Brandreth
Chief Executive


Image of Mark Brandreth, Chief Executive

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