Empowering NHS leaders to lead

New publication looks at the key challenges faced by executive leaders across the NHS and makes recommendations on how best to support NHS leaders | Department of Health and Social Care

The Department of Health and Social Care has published Empowering NHS leaders to lead. This review, led by Sir Ron Kerr, explores three key challenges faced by executive leaders across the NHS:

  • the expectations and support available
  • alignment of performance expectations at the organisational and system level
  • level of administrative burden placed upon leaders.

The report makes a number of recommendations to address these challenges.

Full document available here


Leading as a junior doctor

Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management

This toolkit is designed to help junior doctors build, sustain and run their own local leadership and engagement structures. It includes a number of case studies which showcase good practice from across the country as well as some practical guides to help with the day-to-day management of these groups. The toolkit also summarises the relevant academic literature and explains how different local leadership structures relate to existing contractual requirements.

New chair appointed to improve patient access to innovation in the NHS

Lord Ara Darzi has been appointed as chair of the Accelerated Access Collaborative, a joint government–industry group to speed up patient access to ground-breaking technologies and treatments.

The Accelerated Access Collaborative brings together leaders from the NHS, industry and government to identify the most transformative medical innovations, and will oversee a fast-track route to allow these innovative technologies to be available on the NHS up to 4 years earlier.

Under this Accelerated Access Pathway, launching later this year, a number of the most promising products will be accelerated through the clinical development and NHS approval processes to treat conditions such as cancer, diabetes and dementia.

The project builds on an £86 million funding package to help innovators of all sizes gain access to the NHS market and get their products to patients.

Lord Darzi is a former minister at the Department of Health and Social Care, chair of Imperial College Health Partners, and chairman and director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation.

Full story at Department of Health and Social Care

Learning from vanguards

The NHS Confederation has published the following briefings sharing learning from vanguards:

Image source: http://www.nhsconfed.org


Quality improvement

Establishing quality improvement approaches which actually work has much to do with suitable leadership and organisational culture, according to a new King’s Fund report.


This report explores the factors that have helped organisations to launch a quality improvement strategy and sustain a focus on quality improvement. It identifies three common themes for successfully launching a quality improvement strategy: having a clear rationale; ensuring staff are ready for change; understanding the implications for the organisation’s leadership team in terms of style and role.

The report finds that NHS leaders play a key role in creating the right conditions for
quality improvement. Leaders need to engage with staff, empower frontline teams to
develop solutions, and ensure that there is an appropriate infrastructure in place to
support staff and spread learning.

Full reference: Jabbal, J| Embedding a culture of quality improvement | Kings Fund

Use of Resources assessment framework

A framework for evaluating how providers are making use of resources, leadership and governance in order to provide high quality care that is efficient and sustainable | NHS Improvement


Following sector-wide feedback, we’ve produced this framework, finalising our approach to the Use of Resources assessment. This will help us to better understand how effectively and efficiently providers are using their resources – including finances, workforce, estates and facilities, technology and procurement – to provide high quality, efficient and sustainable care for patients, and will help us to deliver tailored support to providers.

The Use of Resources assessment will also help us to identify providers’ support needs under the Single Oversight Framework (SOF), and deliver targeted support accordingly. We are now updating the SOF to reflect these and other changes in our oversight approach and will publish an updated version in October, following feedback.

Read the full overview here

The Responsive Leadership Intervention

The Responsive Leadership Intervention (RLI) is a multi-faceted intervention aimed at improving leadership and individualized care in long-term care | Geriatric Nursing


We evaluated the influence of the RLI on

  1. Responsive leadership practices by team leaders
  2. Health care aides’ (HCAs) self-determination
  3. HCAs’ perceived ability to provide individualized care.

Change from baseline to 1-month post-intervention was greater in the intervention group than control group for Individualized Care (IC) (p = 0.001), but not for Self Determination (p = 0.26).

Perceived levels of responsive leadership was greater following the intervention among participants with baseline measures that were less than the median (p = 0.007), but not if greater.

At 3-months post-intervention, the intervention group retained 32% of the difference from control in IC, and 49% of the difference from control in responsive leadership; at 6-months post-intervention, 35% and 28%, respectively. The RLI is a feasible method for improving responsive leadership practices and individualized care.

Full reference: Caspar, S. et al. (2017) The Responsive Leadership Intervention: Improving leadership and individualized care in long-term care. Geriatric Nursing. DOI: 10.1016/j.gerinurse.2017.04.004