December 28, 2022 5.30 pm This story is over 10 months old

Reflections 2022: Peter Reading – A tough year, but a big thank you to all staff

NLAG CEO Peter Reading reflects on a year at the NHS health trust

Peter Reading is the Chief Executive of Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust.

It has been another very challenging year and we continue to be exceptionally busy. I want to start by saying a big thank you to all of our fantastic staff for their hard work during 2022. They continue to go to great lengths to look after our patients. I also want to say thank you to our patients, partners and the community for their continued support.

We have made real progress in lots of areas this year. Our big achievement was our Care Quality Commission report, which was published on 2 December. We maintained our overall ‘Requires Improvement’ rating and we saw improvements recognised by CQC in 35 different domains, including across the board on Safety and Goole hospital achieving ‘Good’. The great news is we have now achieved the standard required to move out of ‘quality special measures’ – now called the Recovery Support Programme. That process, which has several formal stages, has started.

Our new Emergency Department (ED) at Grimsby opened to its first patients on 5 October. I’m sure any of you who have unfortunately had to use it, will agree that it’s a massive improvement for our estate and offers many benefits for our patients. Our new ED at Scunthorpe is due to open in the spring of 2023. We have also received approval to go ahead with our new £25 million acute assessment units to be created at our Grimsby and Scunthorpe hospitals.

We were shortlisted for a number of national awards this year. Our End of Life team were finalists for Team of the Year in the Nursing Times awards and we were shortlisted in the Health Service Journal awards in two categories: ‘Integrated Care Partnership of the Year’ and ‘Covid Vaccination Programme’. Both awards were joint projects with other local organisations.

It was great to see feedback from our patients showed the care we provide is ‘most improved’ out of 73 Trusts taking part in the National Inpatient Survey, compared to last year’s results.

We were very excited to hit the local, national, and international headlines with the news we were piloting new technology – augmented reality glasses in our community services. We also officially opened our first full digital X-ray room at Grimsby in August and the new £4.6 million extension to our MRI suite at Scunthorpe opened in February.

Patients are benefiting from a move to digital letters for some specialities, meaning they don’t have to rely on letters anymore to hear from us. We also proudly received an Armed Forces Covenant Silver Award for our work in supporting veterans and those in the forces.

Our community staff have pulled out all of the stops – despite staffing shortages – to keep seeing large numbers of patients in their own homes, as well as run the virtual ward and Outpatient Parenteral Antimicrobial Therapy (OPAT). We are also making great strides with our quality improvement journey. In April, we hosted our first Quality Improvement conference and during the year, 122 projects were undertaken involving more than 200 teams.

Looking forward, one of the things I’m most proud of is the work we’re doing to improve the culture of the organisation. We have launched a new Culture Transformation Board and working group, and we’re starting to make progress. There is still lots more to do, and I look forward to continuing on this exciting journey in 2023.

I hope this gives you a flavour of what we have achieved this year. It is a real honour and a privilege for me to be the Chief Executive of colleagues who display, day in, day out, such dedication and professionalism.