Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital - NHS Trust
This is an acute teaching trust providing comprehensive general and specialist services for a population of up to 750,000 on two sites; the 987-bed Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) and Cromer Hospital on the north Norfolk coast. In addition there are a further five sites that house laboratories, office staff, family planning clinic, breast screening clinic, health records library and pain management clinic. These are all in the Norwich area.
The trust was going through a period of change with the building of the new hospital and in 1999 it was felt that a baseline health and safety audit by a reputable external auditor would provide the action plan required to progress and develop health and safety following the move. It would also help to identify what was needed for a new hospital site so that old habits could be broken and a fresh approach taken to manage health and safety.
From a business perspective, particularly with more recent developments (for patients to 'choose and book' and the application to become a Foundation Trust) it is important to demonstrate that health and safety of staff and patients, visitors and contractors is taken seriously.The improving audit level achieved helps to maintain and demonstrate this commitment to health and safety.
The financial benefits are mainly hidden but include the reduction in serious incidents (see below) and therefore the number of potential claims and litigation, lost time, cover required and other associated costs.
Since 1999 the incident statistics, particularly those resulting in RIDDOR to HSE have been decreasing and since the high of 64 RIDDORs in 1999 the actual number last year (2006) was 16. This produces a much lower than national average (healthcare) incidence rate figure for a workforce of over 5,500 staff.
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital case study
Committing to health and safety excellence