NHS England slavery and human trafficking statement for 2015/16

NHS England leads the NHS in England. We share out more than £100 billion in funds and hold organisations to account for spending this money effectively for patients and efficiently for the tax payer. We operate through central and regional teams and host other support services, operating as a single organisation. We also work closely with partner organisations that provide regulatory and support services to the health and care system.

Further details about what we do can be found on our website.

Current policies and initiatives

NHS England fully supports the Government’s objectives to eradicate modern slavery and human trafficking and recognises the significant role the NHS has to play in both combatting it, and supporting victims. In particular, we are strongly committed to ensuring our supply chains and business activities are free from ethical and labour standards abuses. Steps taken to date include:

People

  • We confirm the identities of all new employees and their right to work in the United Kingdom, and pay all our employees above the National Living Wage
  • Our Respect at Work, Grievance and Voicing your Concerns for Staff policies additionally give a platform for our employees to raise concerns about poor working practices

Whistleblowing in the NHS

  • We are a Prescribed Person under the Public Interest Disclosure (Prescribed Persons) Order 2014, meaning primary care staff working at GP surgeries, opticians, pharmacies and dental practices can raise concerns about inappropriate activity with us directly. We assign any concerns for further investigation and offer support to individuals that have suffered fiscal or professional detriment as a result of whistleblowing

Procurement and our supply chain

  • Our procurement approach follows the Crown Commercial Service standard and includes a mandatory exclusion question regarding the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
  • When procuring goods and services, we additionally apply NHS Terms and Conditions (for non-clinical procurement) and the NHS Standard Contract (for clinical procurement). Both require suppliers to comply with relevant legislation.

Review of effectiveness

We intend to take further steps to identify, assess and monitor potential risk areas in terms of modern slavery and human trafficking, particularly in our supply chains.

In 2016/17, our anti-slavery programme will also work to:

  • support our staff to understand and respond to modern slavery and human trafficking, and the impact that each and every individual working in the NHS can have in keeping present and potential future victims of modern slavery and human trafficking safe
  • ensure that all NHS staff have access to formal training on modern slavery and human trafficking which will provide the latest information and the skills to deal with it.
  • work with NHS funded organisations to ensure modern slavery and human trafficking are taken seriously and features prominently in safeguarding agendas.

Further details can be found on our website.

Simon Stevens, Chief Executive, NHS England, 15 December 2016

This statement is made pursuant to section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and applies to NHS England, including Commissioning Support Units. The Board approved this statement at its meeting on 15 December 2016.  

Gateway Reference: 06204