FFF Accreditation Story - Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust

Author: Paul GoodfieldDate: 1 year 4 months Ago
  • A bit about your organisation, income, size of finance department and position at Q3 and EOY forecast

Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) is the primary community healthcare provider in Lincolnshire delivering community-based services aimed at supporting people to manage their own health at home and reducing the need for people to go into hospital.
We care for thousands of patients every day, in partnership with other health and social care services, to deliver joined-up care in community settings. The intention is to provide good out of hospital care and avoid admissions into acute hospitals.
By providing community-based services aimed at preventing health problems from getting worse, we help to reduce the need for people to go into hospital. The trust works closely with other health and social care services to support a shift from care in acute hospitals, into more joined-up care in the community, close to home.
We have Forecast Income for 2017/18 of £103M, with a Q3 position of £3.8M (EOY Forecast £3.4M). LCHS has a funded establishment of 1,609 WTE with 21.2 WTE in the Finance Team

  • A bit about yourself

FCCA qualified with 39 years NHS experience across a number of NHS organisations and regions. Active HFMA and Future Focused Finance First Wave Value Maker & FACE. NHS GMTS Assessor and Placement Manager. Mentor and coach with a passion for finance/clinical staff training & development especially to help improve individual/team resilience in times of change. Currently working 3 day a week and looking to find ways of giving something back and influencing the future of the NHS. My main area of interest/activity on FFF at the moment is The 4 Skills & Strengths and Accreditation. Lead on the accreditation process/paperwork to assure the DoF that we met the 44 accreditation criteria at Level 1 to allow sign off/submission to FLC.

  • Why you completed the process?

We signed up to FFF at the start 4 years ago and it’s a good way of taking stock and finding where you are. It also gives you areas/an agenda where you can continue to improve and what you need to do to become World Class at Level’s 2 and 3. We have always been strong on Finance Training & Development/accreditation and have a number of other accreditations including the main professional accountancy bodies. This accreditation means so much more as it is NHS specific with your peers and gives you chance to network and eventually go into other NHS organisations to share the learning to the overall benefit of NHS Finance. We had also included this  in our Financial Management Strategy 2017-18 & 2018-19 Objective of Supporting Capacity and Capability and see this as a way of getting Independent recognition of appropriate level of professional finance training/development and support available within the team.

  • How was the process?

A real Team effort. Enjoyable but some areas such as conducting your own staff survey takes you out of your comfort zone. The initial assessment showed we had met some 70% of the 44 criteria but it took us another 7 months to achieve the remaining 30%. The DoF challenged the evidence before sign off/submission and it did take us a few goes before they were happy to sign off on the submission to the FLC. So we got eventually managed to the finish line to meet the January FLC meeting deadline.

  • Thoughts on obtaining the accreditation

Proud of the team and its achievement/recognition. It allows you to put your head above the parapet and say to others inside/outside organisation that we are here, doing some good work and to come have a look at us/what we are doing therefore promoting the scheme. We have achieved a lot  but there is still plenty to do and we are already starting to look at the Levels 2 and 3 but with external verification its bound to be a slightly different ballgame.