Joanna Lloyd, puts a number of questions to the new Chief Executive of the NHS Litigation Authority, Catherine Dixon. Catherine was previously General Counsel and Company Secretary at the NSPCC, working as part of the Executive Team.
Joanna Lloyd, puts a number of questions to the new Chief Executive of the NHS Litigation Authority, Catherine Dixon. Catherine was previously General Counsel and Company Secretary at the NSPCC, working as part of the Executive Team. Before that she worked as a Director of Vancouver Coastal Health Authority in Canada and as Commercial Director at Bupa Care Services. She is a solicitor and has an MBA.
I cannot say that I was surprised, however, I was extremely impressed by the high level of competence and expertise within the NHS LA team. This team has dealt with all the claims coming out of the NHS in England for 17 years. Perhaps then, it is not surprising that they are extremely knowledgeable in what is a very complex area of the law.
The NHS has seen a significant increase in the number of claims being made in the last few years. One of its greatest challenges is making sure the organisation has the capacity to deal with the increase, particularly given budget constraints within the NHS. The NHS LA was recently reviewed by Marsh, an independent insurance broker. Marsh recognised the expertise of the NHS LA but also identified that claims handlers had very large workloads. In order to ensure that claims are robustly and rigorously investigated, it’s important to have the capacity within the organisation to achieve this.
The NHS LA has a number of Corporate Objectives. Inevitably these include objectives to ensure continuous improvement in the delivery of service to our members. In addition, the NHS LA is prioritising the following with its membership:
We have met with representatives of approximately 200 trusts to discuss the role of the NHS LA and to get members’ views on our proposals for change and the NHS LA’s service:
The top priorities are:
We are revisiting our cause codes and taking a revised approach
to coding and the collation of data on our Claims Management
System. The transition needs to be treated with care to avoid any
discontinuity which may lead to inconsistencies when viewing data.
Having said this, work on coding is already well under way and
codes are being mapped to both existing state (for continuity) and
where possible, other coding such as NPSA and DH.
We will also be recording never events which will enable more effective use of data in the future. We are seeking input from medical experts (including RCOG in relation to our maternity codes) our actuaries and other key stakeholders to ensure that we have got the coding right. We are also looking at best practise elsewhere and for example, considering the approach taken in Australia which has developed a robust system of coding.
My partner Sally.
Both – however at the moment the focus is definitely the road. I have just ridden to Amsterdam in 2 days, over 300 miles, 4 countries – mad but for a great cause Scope which is a charity which helps disabled people.
Predictably I must say chocolate, although it needs to be a good quality dark chocolate!