Our collaboration with Barts Health

Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT) and Barts Health group have been working closely together while battling Covid-19.

In 2021 it was agreed to extend this collaboration throughout our recovery of the pandemic as we both strive to tackle our waiting lists, improve our urgent and emergency care and respond to the stark health inequalities in north-east London (NEL) which were exacerbated by the global virus.

The first action was to appoint a new Chair in common, the Right Honourable Jacqui Smith, which was a significant step in building a closer partnership.

Following a few months of talking to staff and stakeholders about the challenges and the opportunities of working more closely together - with the crucial test being that the collaboration must deliver better, quicker and more effective access to services for the residents of NEL – a Closer Collaboration document was published in September 2021.

The two trusts have appointed Vice Chairs to help strengthen the boards and deepen the collaborative work. We’ve been able to show how people across north east London have benefitted from our relationship, with more than 3,000 people being treated more quickly during the busy winter months, as a result of the innovative joint-working.

After Alwen Williams announced her intention to step down it was decided to recruit a Group CEO who would be the accountable officer for both trusts and Shane DeGaris has been appointed to this new role.

We are strengthening our close collaboration through a series of key executive and Board appointments. In recognition of this shared leadership, Matthew Trainer, Chief Executive of BHRUT, is now also Deputy Group Chief Executive Officer of Barts Health and BHRUT.

How our patients are benefitting from the collaboration

Working closely together has helped us speed up more than 1,500 patient referrals, including combining forces to perform the first joint revision knee surgery which reduced a patient's wait from 18 months to 3.

Find out more on how we're working together across north east London.

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