GIRFT programme appoints top clinicians for national specialty reviews

Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT), a programme designed to improve clinical quality and efficiency within the NHS by reducing unwarranted variations, has appointed six more leading clinicians to join its national review of 35 medical and surgical specialties.

Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT), a programme designed to improve clinical quality and efficiency within the NHS by reducing unwarranted variations, has appointed six more leading clinicians to join its national review of 35 medical and surgical specialties.

The new appointments will lead reviews into rheumatology, endocrinology and stroke medicine.  The GIRFT programme, which started as a pilot review of orthopaedic surgery, now has 41 clinical leads and advisors from across the NHS working to deliver improvements across a range of medical and surgical specialities.

Professor Tim Briggs, Chair of GIRFT and National Director of Clinical Quality and Efficiency at NHS Improvement, said: I am delighted to welcome our latest high calibre appointees – our clinical leads are all experts in their field with a detailed knowledge of the clinical services within their specialty.  The GIRFT programme has brought into sharp focus the differences in the way services are delivered and our clinical leads, who all understand the challenges, are committed to finding the solutions that will deliver sustainable, high quality services, improve patient outcomes and bring about efficiencies.”

The GIRFT clinical leads visit trusts and examine trust data to look at variations and differences in areas such as effective procedures and treatments, length of hospital stay, patient care management and costs.  They work with trust clinical teams and managers to explore the challenges they face, and to understand the variations and what needs to be done to address them. They also oversee the creation of a national report into their specialty which provides detailed evidence of the benefits of proposed improvements and sets out a range of recommendations to improve patient care and outcomes.

The majority of clinicians joining GIRFT have been recruited by the programme in conjunction with their specialty’s Royal College or professional society.  They will visit every trust in England that undertakes their specialty. The new appointments start work on their programmes in the early part of 2018.

Speaking about the rheumatology workstream, Dr Lesley Kay commented: “Data is key to improving the care provided by rheumatology departments. Our national arthritis audit is already proof of this concept, and I am certain that the new audit, launching in 2018, will be even more influential. Working with clinicians to identify local variation, and using GIRFT methodology to support improvements, is a major opportunity for rheumatology services and their patients.”

This was reinforced by Dr Peter Lanyon who said: “I’m looking forward to working with colleagues across the country to gain insight into how to improve outcomes and variations in care, with a view to developing national solutions that will work for all. The inclusion of rheumatology within the GIRFT programme marks an important phase in the ongoing development of our specialty.”

The newly appointed GIRFT clinical leads are:

  1. Endocrinology

Clinical Lead:  Professor John Wass, Professor of Endocrinology at Oxford University.  Until 2012, Prof Wass was Head of the Department of Endocrinology at the Oxford Centre for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Metabolism, at the Churchill Hospital, Oxford.

  1. Rheumatology

Joint Clinical Leads:

Dr Lesley Kay, Consultant Rheumatologist, Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and Chair of the British Society for Rheumatology Clinical Affairs Committee.

Dr Peter Lanyon, Consultant Rheumatologist, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust and President of the British Society for Rheumatology.

Senior Clinical Advisor:  Professor Alex MacGregor, Consultant Rheumatologist, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, and Chair of the British Society for Rheumatology Research Committee.

  1. Stroke Medicine

Clinical Lead: Dr Deborah Lowe, Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Senior Clinical Advisor:  Dr David Hargroves, East Kent University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

A full list of all GIRFT clinical leads can be found on the website: www.gettingitrightfirsttime.co.uk

10 November 2017