Hospital Dr News

“New academy will improve NHS leadership”

The NHS has launched a Leadership Academy to support employee development and drive organisational improvement during the government’s NHS reforms.

Doctors, nurses and managers from across the NHS will work with the academy to boost leadership skills and embed best practice.

The Leeds-based academy will also work with public health and social care professionals, where new Health and Wellbeing Boards will play an important role in improving local health and care outcomes.

NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson said the academy would be critical to delivering the strategic shift in leadership needed for the NHS in the coming years.

He said: “The ethos is simple. NHS success is dependent on great leadership right across the service, across clinicians and managers. Great leaders create working climates where people working with them feel engaged, empowered and satisfied. Those people in turn have a direct positive impact on patients’ experiences and their health outcomes. Everyone working for, with or on behalf of the NHS has a crucial role to play in this, as we focus on our purpose of improving health outcomes for our patients.”

“We face huge challenges across the world of health, social care and public health. Our leaders must be better equipped and more innovative than ever before. Vitally, they must be able to work in an integrated way across health and social care, to make sure people have a consistently good experience of our services.”

The academy has four main areas of work:

developing the approach to leadership, which includes defining what good leadership looks like, setting national standards for leadership development and recognising outstanding leadership through the 2012 NHS Leadership Recognition Awards.

commissioning a range of national programmes, including the graduate management training programme, the top leaders programme, the clinical leadership fellowship programme and the ‘breaking through’ programme for leaders from BME communities.

supporting the development of local leadership capability.

developing shared leadership approaches with local government and providers of NHS services.

Jim Easton, director of transformation for the NHS Commissioning Board, said: “The academy will provide expertise and support to help the leaders we have now. At the same time it will support the development of a new generation. They will steer the NHS into a future which builds on our existing strengths and adds new ones, championing clinical leadership, inclusion, equality and diversity, and encouraging innovation.

“People will be able to access this learning and support from an ‘entry’ level to the most senior and experienced leaders. The Academy will give them all tools, techniques, support and behaviours to help them engage and enable their staff, partners and patients, as well as continually improving standards. ‘With change at a scale and pace the NHS has never seen before, the fundamental difference between success and failure is the calibre of leadership.”

From April, Jan Sobieraj, managing director of NHS and Social Care Workforce, will be interim managing director of the academy. Karen Lynas, director of leadership at the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, will be interim deputy managing director and head of programmes.

Read more about the academy.

Read a blog on an alternative approach to leadership development.

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3 Responses to ““New academy will improve NHS leadership””

  1. Malcolm Morrison says:

    Another management ‘initiative’! No ‘pilot study’. No ‘evidence’ of its efficiency or, indeed, its ‘cost-effectiveness’. If ‘leadership’ is so important, why has it been so long in coming?

    To quote NHS chief executive Sir David Nicholson: “NHS success is dependent on great leadership right across the service” Sadly, this has been lacking almost since the inception of the NHS – certainly in more recent years when they introduced ‘modern management’ that included ‘purchaser/provider split’ ‘commissioning’ and ‘cost-effectiveness’, with a ‘tick-box culture’, though never measuring the cost-effectiveness of the ‘management structure’ itself!

    To quote him again: “Great leaders create working climates where people working with them feel engaged, empowered and satisfied. Those people in turn have a direct positive impact on patients’ experiences and their health outcomes.” Not a bad ‘definition’ of a consultant!

  2. Dr Umesh Prabhu says:

    NHS Leadership unlikely to change unless we have new vision, new people, new thinking. The sad reality of our NHS is ‘Old wine in a new bottle’. The same old leaders take on leadership roles in different organisations and they keep on starting more new bodies or academy.

    NHS Leadership will only improve when we have true leaders who put patient safety and their well being above anything else and have passion, commitment and enthusiasm and real ‘balls’ to tackle challenges of our NHS.

    Leadership is about protecting patients and supporting doctors, nurses and others to do a good job and not simply about ‘political correctness’ or creation of new academy. We need true leaders in each and every NHS Trusts and every department and nearer to the patients and not in an academy or in the ivory tower. It is the ‘Ivory tower’ leadership is the problem in our NHS.

  3. Sinem says:

    I feel the changes are too quick. There has been ltlite input from grass roots from the beginning. Far too much money is spent on changing the NHS for changes sake and, money is not spent at the interface of patient/practitioner -there are too many managers. It is right to devolve to local level but to invest in private health care ie.g via the choose and book system- is unethical and sets a precedent for using private providers when clearly the investment should be in local NHS services. The public should be encouraged with self care instead of visiting the GP/wal-in centre/OOH centre/A and E for things which quite clearly are minor and self limiting. GP’s should not be forced into inviting pateints 3 times for annual reviews for QOF- you are enforcing widespread waste- there are the same persitent non attenders. these are just a sample of my thoughts.

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