Colchester Hospital University NHS Foundation Trust has two main sites: Colchester General Hospital and Essex County Hospital. The Trust provides healthcare services to around 370,000 people from Colchester and the surrounding area of north east Essex.
Colchester General Hospital opened in 1984. Essex County Hospital was opened in 1820 and has two wards used for oncology (cancer) patients.
Scientific staff are based at the Severalls Hospital site and in the microbiology department near Colchester General Hospital.
Although it is our strategy to centralise acute services at Colchester General Hospital, we also provide some services - such as outpatient and maternity services - at the community hospitals in Clacton and Harwich (run by Anglian Community Enterprise , or ACE) and Halstead Hospital (run by Central Essex Community Services, or CECS).
The population we serve
The Trust provides healthcare services to around 370,000 people from Colchester and the surrounding area of north east Essex. In addition, we provide radiotherapy and oncology services to a wider population of about 670,000 people across north and mid-Essex. Our new £25m state-of-the-art radiotherapy centre being built at Colchester General Hospital should start treating its first patients in early 2014. It will replace the current radiotherapy centre at Essex County Hospital.
A new service for major arterial vascular surgery began in July 2012 for the 750,000 population of north east Essex, east Suffolk and the Colne Valley. Anyone from that area requiring the most complex vascular surgery, either as an emergency or elective (planned) procedure, now has their operation at a new centre at Colchester General Hospital.
The Trust provides a range of patient services.
Our NHS Foundation Trust status
You can read more here about how we achieved our NHS foundation trust status.
The vision is summarised as:
To be widely recognised as the Trust that our patients and staff would want to recommend to their friends and relatives.
The priorities that will help deliver the vision are:
- inspiring our employees - developing a culture that engages our employees in the business, promotes clear values and behaviours, underpinned by leadership styles of openness and involvement; which recognises and rewards the contribution of individuals
- doing the core services well - maintaining and enhancing our reputation as a safe, capable and efficient Trust, delivering high quality standards
- strengthening our centres of excellence - supporting existing high-performing services and developing others to serve the local population and beyond
- shaping the future; ready to respond - identifying a small number of policy areas of importance to the Trust and to seek to influence these as appropriate; strengthen horizon-scanning capability and have a flexible and dynamic ability to respond to opportunities
- building a sustainable future - supporting our long-term future and ability to improve facilities and services by optimising our surplus/ contribution from clinical income; and building and growing our non-clinical income
We use a Net Promoter Score (NPS) - a customer loyalty metric showing how many "promoters" and "detractors" there are - to try and measure patients' willingness to recommend the Trust to their friends and family. NPS can be as low as ?100 (everybody is a detractor) or as high as +100 (everybody is a promoter). An NPS that is positive (i.e. higher than zero) is felt to be good, and an NPS of +50 is excellent. Our Trust's NPS is currently hovering around the +80 mark.
It has long been the strategy of this Trust and our predecessor organisations to centralise acute services at Colchester General Hospital. Our biggest challenge is to continue to invest in services and improve quality and the patient experience against a backdrop of tightening public sector spending.
In this context, our priority remains frontline clinical services, especially patient safety and improving the patient experience.
There is no question of the Trust compromising on quality or standards. We are also committed to our programme of capital investments.
More details about the Trust's priorities are set out in our Annual Plan 2012/13. We are committed to working with our patients and clinical staff to do our best and to make service quality the best we can achieve.
Innovation in our portfolio of clinical services
Innovation in our portfolio of clinical services progressed in 2011/12. Among the many developments, the following are of note:
- a year-long expansion of the Trust's Palliative Care Team was completed
- the Emergency Assessment Unit at Colchester General Hospital increased from 20 beds to 45 beds
- potentially life-saving defibrillators were implanted in patients for the first time at Colchester General Hospital
- work began on a £1.5m project to create a specialist vascular operating theatre at Colchester General Hospital
- an intensive rehabilitation programme was made permanent and was extended to all orthopaedic patients.
You can read more details and about more innovations on page 11 of our latest Annual Report and Accounts
In 2011/12 the Trust achieved a surplus of £12.3m
- Surplus of £2.2m before fixed asset impairments of £4.9m, leaving a retained deficit of £2.7m for 2010/11
- Surplus of £2.3m for 2009/10
- Surplus of £13.8m for 2008/09
- Surplus of £2.9m for 2007/08
Most of our income comes from NHS North East Essex (the PCT).
Our Trust is one of the largest employers in north east Essex, employing 4,163 people on 31 March 2012. This was up from 3,646 people 12 months earlier, due to the Trust bringing facilities management services in-house (formerly provided by Carillion plc). Nevertheless, during 2011/12 we employed an additional 60 whole-time equivalent staff (excluding the facilities staff) and plan to employ a further 30 whole-time equivalent staff in 2012/13.
The Trust works with a variety of public, private and voluntary stakeholders. We do this to develop a sustainable environment in which people will continue to enjoy high levels of health and wellbeing but with modern health and social care services available for those who need them.
The Trust had formal contracts or service level agreements with third parties which provided some essential services. The two main contractors were Anglia Support Partnership for payroll and financial services and Carillion plc for facilities management services.
In June 2011, the Trust's Board of Directors decided to bring in-house the facilities management services that had been provided by Carillion.
Beginning on 1 October 2011, when the Trust's contract with Carillion expired, FM services were managed in-house and provided by the Trust's own staff.
Find out more
You can read more about our vision, our strategy, the Trust's profile, and plans for the future on our Annual Plan pages.
You can read more about how we performed in our latest Annual Report and Accounts