Independent review into Wirral University Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

We have published an independent review into leadership, behavioural, governance and cultural issues at Wirral University Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

The review conducted by Carole Taylor-Brown, commissioned by NHS Improvement, examines issues raised about the trust during 2017 and NHS Improvement’s handling of these concerns when they were raised with NHS Improvement’s regional team. It also looks at the trust’s handling of a serious disciplinary case.

The report outlines how a number of governance failings at the trust during 2017 led to the breakdown of relations between the executive directors, non-executive directors, the former Chair and former Chief Executive, and how staff at all levels felt unable to speak freely about concerns they held. The report also found that NHS Improvement took timely and appropriate action to support trust executives once concerns had been raised about the trust.

It is clear from this report that poor governance and culture at the trust contributed to a breakdown of relations between senior leaders and non-executive board members. This prevented them from working together to provide their patients with the safe, high quality care that they rightly expect.

We have appointed Sir David Henshaw, who has a proven track record of providing good leadership to hospitals facing difficulties, as the interim Chairman. He will work with us, alongside the interim Chief Executive, to support the trust to make much needed improvements to their culture, allowing the trust to move forward and address the concerns raised in this report.”

Ian Dalton, Chief Executive of NHS Improvement