Key themes from Healthcare Partnership Network

We recently held our Healthcare Partnership Network South event, from 5th-6th November at Norton Park Hotel in Winchester. An engaging few days as always, we were interested to hear from our speakers and sponsors alike about the latest innovations and transformational change in the sector. Our jam-packed agenda saw 30+ senior leaders in the NHS and representatives from some of the healthcare sector’s most innovative suppliers deliver fascinating content on their triumphs, challenges and visions for the future of services. 

With so much great content to process, we thought we’d review the key themes and learnings from this year’s event – so whether you attended or not, you get the most possible value and insight from the content that was shared.

Here are 3 key themes we saw explored at HPN South November 2019.


Collaboration is key

The focal point of our events is enabling collaboration. We bring together the best and brightest within the industry – both NHS and supplier slide – to share their knowledge and experiences and work towards innovation and transformation together. Slotting neatly into this atmosphere of collaboration, many of the senior leaders at the event talked about working alongside health organisations – at home and abroad – to shape and grow their own transformation programs. 

Michael Wilson CBE, Chief Executive at Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, bought in Japanese kanban style management processes to their Trust – focusing on waste management rather than cost reduction. This was inspired not only by Michael’s only knowledge and experiences but also by visits to Virginia Mason Health System in Seattle who had successfully implemented this vision. 

Other speakers reflected at length about successes they had seen from other Trusts and organisations which helped them shape their own approach. On the supplier side, many of our sponsors had teamed up with complementary or similar service providers to offer a more well-rounded solution into healthcare. For example, clinical documentation specialists M Modal have developed a state-of-the-art voice recognition system for taking patient notes more efficiently, powered by Philips Dictation.

Speaking of collaboration, it’s just as important to think about it closer to home too. Paul Brown, Chief Finance Officer at North West London CCGs, reflected on their journey to becoming a successful Integrated Care System. Being an ICS is evidently about a joined-up approach to healthcare – and Paul noted the importance of breaking down barriers and enabling clinicians to work together to deliver the best possible care. He also noted that there is a workforce challenge within an ICS – that it’s difficult to develop, find and retain skills within the community. 

Phil Richardson, Chief Systems Integration Officer and Lead Director at NHS Dorset CCG, is meeting this challenge head on. Working in close partnership with the local council, university, and private sector organisations, the group is addressing the challenge by emphasising economy creation – driving wellbeing through promoting skills and creating jobs in healthcare for people in the local area. 


Embedding improvement

Another theme at the core of our events is obviously transformation and improvement – our delegates are here to learn from others about how to drive it. Hugh McCaughey, National Director of Improvement at NHS England and NHS Improvement, spoke about the importance of embedding improvement across the NHS, rather than seeing it as “something shiny to grab onto”. It’s not about embedding a particular tool – it’s about embedding a culture and an approach. Hugh expressed that improvement should filter right down to frontline staff – echoing Michael Wilson CBE’s sentiments, who spoke about embedding improvement in the same way and running rapid improvement sessions within the organisation, which included everyone from surgeons to porters. 

Hugh was Chief Executive at the Southwestern Health and Social Care Trust for 10 years – and reflected fondly on how it was “the best job in the world”, and even with 10,000 staff, it felt like a big family. Togetherness, common purpose built around SQE. Hugh left the “best job in the world” to work with NHS Improvement and NHS England – because he fundamentally believes that embedding improvement is the change the NHS. 


Focusing on people

From rapid improvement workshops to the emphasis on understanding how to be a good leader, people were very much within the focus of our senior leaders. Obviously, everything our delegates and speakers do is to try to improve the care they offer and therefore the lives of the people they serve – and it was very much front of mind of our speakers. 

Cath Campbell, Head of Hospital Inspection for the South East at the CQC talked not about checklists but about the mindset of putting people at the forefront of everything you do as a healthcare organisation – sharing a very personal story about what she sees as outstanding healthcare. She emphasised the need to be compassionate, safe and effective. 

Paula Head, Chief Executive at University Hospitals Southampton NHS Trust, delivered a highly engaging and inspirational session on leadership earlier in the day, and was similarly forceful on the importance of understanding the experience of everyone in your organisation. Paula left us with some of her top tips for leadership, one of them being – “start friendly conversations with people you don’t know – you’ll learn something from them you wouldn’t have otherwise.” 


We strive to provide the perfect setting for NHS senior leaders and suppliers in the industry to collaborate and learn from each other – so it’s great to reflect on the event and some of the fantastic discussions that were had. If you’d like to join this discussion next year – get in touch for an opportunity to sponsor a Healthcare Partnership Network event in 2020


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