The Trust launched its Freedom to Speak Up campaign in July 2015 with the appointment of Heather Bruce, Senior Radiographer, as its first Freedom to Speak Up Guardian – one of only a handful in the NHS at that time.
The purpose of this role, which was recommended by the Francis Inquiry, was to help shift the culture of the Trust to one where all staff, volunteers, students and governors feel able to raise any issues or concerns and know that they will be addressed confidentially, swiftly, and in line with good practice.
Since then, Heather has worked hard to make raising concerns as easy as possible for staff, especially clinical staff that do not always have access to emails or a computer. This is where the idea for the Freedom to Speak Up App came from.
The free app allows staff to raise a concern confidentially and from work or home via their phone or tablet.
Heather can then look into the issue and support the member of staff who wishes to speak up ensuring that the concern is escalated and addressed appropriately.
Heather, said: “It is really important that staff not only feel able to raise concerns if they see something that they think isn’t right or that may compromise safe patient care, but that they know they will be listened to and supported by the Trust if they do raise a concern. This is absolutely what we are about at UHMBT and that is why we are thinking of as many ways as possible to make it easier for staff to raise any concerns they may have. The purpose of the App is to give staff another way of speaking up if they want to. Everyone has their phone with them at all times these days and use them to do most things so it seemed a logical next step for us. The App gives staff all the information they need on raising a concern and what to expect next, and although we prefer it if they give us their name so we can feedback to them on the outcome of their concern, they can submit it anonymously if they wish.”
Staff can now download the app from the Apple App Store or Google Play for Android.
Morecambe Freedom to Speak Up by Intec for Business Limited