GIRFT appoints top clinicians for national specialty reviews

GIRFT appoints top clinicians

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

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.

2. 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.

3. 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: Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT)

GIRFT background

Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) is a national programme designed to improve medical care within the NHS by reducing unwarranted variations. By tackling variations in the way services are delivered across the NHS, and by sharing best practice between trusts, GIRFT identifies changes that will help improve care and patient outcomes, as well as delivering efficiencies such as the reduction of unnecessary procedures and resource savings that can be reinvested in patient care.

Importantly, GIRFT is led by frontline clinicians who are expert in the areas they are reviewing. This means the data that underpins the GIRFT methodology is being reviewed by people who understand those disciplines and manage those services on a day to day basis.

GIRFT began as a pilot within orthopaedic surgery created and led by orthopaedic surgeon Professor Tim Briggs at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust (RNOH). Following the success of the pilot the GIRFT methodology has been rolled out to 35 surgical and medical specialties and is now a partnership between the RNOH and the Operational Productivity Directorate of NHS Improvement (NHSI). The aim is to improve the quality of medical and clinical care within the NHS through deeper insight of performance, informed by data analysis across a range of metrics.

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