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Transforming christie services for cancer patients

From EPSA - European Public Sector Award

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Award nominee

In 2005, the Christie cancer centre was in deficit, failing its patient waiting targets, and at risk of merger with a larger NHS Trust.

Therefore, a business approach has been used to transform the cancer centre into a performance-driven and high-achieving organisation. The nine strategic objectives are: to improve clinical outcomes, to develop a network of services and an ambitious programme of cancer research, to ensure the best possible patient experience, to demonstrate excellent clinical quality and financial and operational management, to develop a nationally recognised programme of cancer education, to be an excellent employer and to recruit excellent employees. In particular, Caroline Shaw, the chief executive, has a strong track record of improving patient care through reform and modernisation and has made an influential and lasting impact to NHS and cancer patients through her drive, creativity and exceptional leadership. In just three years, waiting times have been dramatically reduced and patient experience has improved.

The structural, performance and cultural changes at the Christie have been achieved through dedicated collaboration between managers and clinicians, driving service improvements. This has enabled us to pilot Service Line Management, with clinicians identifying opportunities to improve care and reduce costs. Clinicians and managers have worked together to re-organise our wards by cancer type to provide greater specialist care; provide a new assessment unit for faster, more efficient assessment of patients; and create a new research division and new education directorate. Additionally, Lean techniques, balanced scorecards, and monthly performance management meetings across the entire organisation have been introduced and implemented.

The Christie was the first hospital in the country to be awarded the highest risk management level by the NHS Litigation Authority in 2006, confirming it has the safest systems in place for patient care. An ambitious five-year strategy which breaks new ground and is set to transform treatment and care for cancer patients has also been implemented. A £75 million investment plan over the next two years includes a new £35 million patient treatment centre, which will contain the largest early clinical trials unit in the world - and a unique network of £17 million Christie radiotherapy centres in other parts of the area to deliver treatment closer to people’s homes. In 2008 the Christie received a double ‘excellent’ for services and use of resources in the national ‘Health Check’ results, was rated fourth best hospital in the country in the national patient survey, and was highly commended in the national ‘Acute Healthcare Organisation of the Year Award’. It was also the first hospital in the North West of England to introduce robotic surgery. The Christie also became the first UK hospital to be invited to join the Organisation of European Cancer Institutes (OECI) in June 2007. Caroline originally trained as a midwife and won the ‘North West Inspiring Woman of the Year’ 2007 award (public sector) in recognition of her achievements and the significant benefits they have brought to cancer patients.

Award info
Award category: leadership and change
Award type: nominee
Award year: 2009
Project type
Sector: Public health and social welfare/affairs
Type of activity: new services or new technologies
Keywords: Cancer research and education, cultural changes, hospital
Short English description: The strategic objectives are: to improve clinical outcomes, to develop a network of services and an ambitious programme of cancer research, to ensure the best possible patient experience, to demonstrate excellent clinical quality and financial and operational management, to develop a nationally recognised programme of cancer education, to be an excellent employer and to recruit excellent employees
Further information
Organisation: Christie NHS Foundation Trust
Other applicants:
Homepage: http://www.christie.nhs.uk
Level of government: national level
Size of organisation: >100
Number of people involved:
Country: United Kingdom
EU membership: EU member
Language code: en
Start date:
End date:


Transforming christie services for cancer patients (53.4312242° N, 2.2287035° W)
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