Quality and safety are at the foundation of all we do. They form the basis for our Trust strategy and our focus on providing high quality, safe care that reaches all parts of the organisation.

We are:

  • Acknowledged as having a positive culture of safety, openness, transparency and incident reporting by our peers in the NHS Learning from mistakes league
  • Consistently investing in and embedding regulatory requirements across the Trust
  • Providing multiple opportunities for Board to floor programmes, Governor visits, peer review and service user involvement to ensure transparency and quality  
  • Identifying and managing risks to the quality of care
  • Focussed on triangulation of activity, embedding good practice and learning from lessons.

Our services are registered and regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and OFSTED (Short Breaks Services). To maintain registration, we must meet standards set by the regulators and maintain ongoing compliance to these standards.


Our CQC Report, August 2018

Following a CQC routine inspection in June 2018 the Trust  has been rated Outstanding.

NHFT also received its first well-led inspection from the CQC, examining the quality of the leadership and management of the Trust, and has been rated Outstanding in this area too.

The CQC conducted the routine inspection and well-led inspection through their new procedural and investigative processes which were introduced nationwide at the beginning of the year. The new process still continues to use the five areas of inspection: Care, Responsive, Safe, Effective and Well-led.  The Trust has been rated Good for Safe, Responsive and Effective and Outstanding for Care and Well-led.

The Trust’s CQC report for the routine and well-led inspection has been published and available on the CQC website.  The CQC report summarises the findings of the inspection along with a rating for each area.  We are particularly pleased with the following highlights from the report:

  • Staff showed caring, compassionate attitudes, proud to work for the Trust and dedicated to their roles.   We were impressed by the way all staff have embraced and modelled the Trust’s values
  • Impressed by the strength and depth of leadership at the Trust and displaying integrity on an ongoing basis
  • The Trust has a clear vision and set of values with quality and sustainability as top priorities.  The Trust benchmarked their ‘business as usual’ against the vision and values and kept the message the heart of all aspects of the running of the organisation
  • Staff treated patients with kindness, dignity and respect.  Consistently staff attitudes were helpful, understanding and staff used kind and supportive language which patients would understand.  The style and nature of communication was kind, respectful and compassionate.  Staff showed strong therapeutic relationships with their patients and clearly understood their needs
  • Managers investigated incidents appropriately and shared lessons learned with staff in a number of ways.  We reviewed serious incident reports and found investigations were thorough and included participation from family and carers, where appropriate
  • The Trust responded in a positive way to the improvements we asked them to make following our inspection in January 2017.

Full details of the ratings, including a ratings grid, are given in the report published online here.

Quality account

Our Quality Account describes our performance and progress with meeting our priorities for quality improvements at Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust. You can find more information by reading our full Quality Account, within our NHFT Annual Report and Accounts 2017-18.

Safe staffing

All Trusts with inpatient areas are required to publish information about the number of nursing, midwifery and care staff working on each ward, together with the percentage of shifts meeting safe staffing guidelines.
NHS England and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) have issued joint guidance on the ‘Hard Truths’ commitments regarding nursing, midwifery and care staff capacity and capability. The ‘Hard Truths’ commitments represent the government’s response to the Francis Report (2013) into the poor care identified at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust.

The key priorities from the ‘Hard Truths’ for Trusts are to provide:

  • A six-monthly board report describing the staffing capacity and capability, following an establishment review, using evidence-based tools where possible
  • To display information at ward level about the nurses, midwives and care staff deployed for each shift compared to what has been planned
  • A monthly board report containing details of planned and actual staffing levels on a shift-by-shift basis at ward level for the previous month
  • The monthly report must also be published on the Trust’s website. We are expected to link or upload the report to the Trust’s webpage on NHS Choices.

At NHFT, we take the care of our patients very seriously and already have a number of mechanisms in place to ensure that our wards are safely staffed. Each month, we will publish information about our staffing levels and provide links to papers discussed in public at our Trust board meetings.

For further information on safe staffing please contact the Safe Staffing Team: SafeStaffing@nhft.nhs.uk