Bolton NHS Foundation Trust shortlisted in national awards for financial success

Bolton NHS Foundation Trust has been shortlisted in a prestigious national awards scheme for its outstanding financial turnaround.Bolton Hospital Main

The Trust is one of three shortlisted entries in the Finance category of the Guardian Public Sector Awards, up against projects from Angus Council and Sevenoaks District Council.

The Trust was put into special measures in 2013 due to failings including in finance. To address the problems the finance staff introduced a framework that didn’t involve the usual method of bringing in a central turnaround team. Instead it put its resources into supporting its clinical divisions, which deal directly with patient care, ensuring appropriate financial measures without adversely affecting the quality of services.

Processes were transformed and costs reduced leading to the Trust going from an operational deficit of £14.4m in 12/13 to a surplus of £1.8m in 15/16.

The Trust was brought out of special measures in September 2015 — the first NHS Trust to be removed from financial special measures without the need for merger or acquisition and the first successful standalone financial turnaround in the NHS, during the FT era.

At the same time, there have been improvements in quality of patient care and the Trust was rated as “Good” by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in August this year.

Simon Worthington, Finance Director at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust said: “A critical part of our nomination is that we delivered this ourselves. As much as we could highlight some key individuals it doesn’t do justice to the effort that every person at Bolton FT has put in to turn the Trust around on behalf of our patients. One of the key points of recent CQC report was the pride that everyone at Bolton has in our organisation. So when we’re asked how people were involved, the simple answer is all 5,000 of amazing staff.”

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