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Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, Thomas Drive, L14 3PE
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LHCH ranked top for ‘Speaking Up’ – for the second year

Date: 10 July 2020 11:52

For the second consecutive year, Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (LHCH), has been ranked the top performing acute specialist trust in the country in the National Guardian’s Office’s Freedom to Speak Up (FTSU) Index.

The FTSU Index, first published in 2019, is a key benchmarking tool that enables trusts to understand the importance of fostering a positive speaking up culture. It aims to measure the FTSU cultures within trusts and has been developed in collaboration between the National Guardian’s Office and NHS England, based on findings taken from the national NHS Staff Survey.

Dr Henrietta Hughes, National Guardian, said: “Speaking up has never been more important, and the reality of whether leaders and organisations listen, act and learn is a critical part of this process.

“The introduction of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in 2015 following the Francis Freedom to Speak Up Review has seen an improvement in the speaking up culture nationally.

“Measuring the effect of culture change can be difficult, and the acid test is the view of staff. In NHS Trusts we can seek to measure the impact of improvements that have been put into place through the responses to the NHS Annual Staff Survey, on whether staff feel knowledgeable, encouraged and supported to raise concerns and if they agree they would be treated fairly if involved in an error, near miss or incident.

Dr Hughes added: “Fostering a positive speaking up culture sits firmly with the leadership and we can see that organisations with higher FTSU Index scores tend to be rated as Outstanding or Good by CQC.”

Sue Pemberton, Director of Nursing and Quality at LHCH, said: “We are delighted with today’s announcement that LHCH has been recognised as the top performing acute specialist trust for the second year running.”

“As a Trust, we are passionate about embedding a culture of openness, honesty and transparency and believe that having the freedom to speak up is integral to this. It is by creating such a culture at LHCH, that we can continually improve services for our patients, families and the working environment for our staff.” 

The top FTSU Index ranking follows the news last week that the Trust had been rated joint second in the country for overall patient experience in the NHS Inpatient Survey.

The full report can be viewed here.