• Six trusts to take part in new improvement programme
  • Follows 2015 work with five trusts and Virginia Mason Institute
  • New initiative to start in July

Regulators will offer support to a new cohort of NHS providers through an “in house” improvement programme, following work commissioned from American firm Virginia Mason.

HSJ has learned that up to six trusts will be sought by NHS Improvement to take part in the new programme, which will be based on the same core principles as the “lean” approach deployed by the Virginia Mason Institute.

In 2015, the US company was commissioned to work with five NHS trusts on quality, safety and efficiency initiatives. This programme runs until 2020 and is supported by £12.5m of national funding.

The trusts involved in this programme are: Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital; Surrey and Sussex Healthcare; Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals; Leeds Teaching Hospitals; and University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire.

It is understood that these trusts could be asked to work with the six trusts in the new programme.

The application process will start in mid January and the programme will start in July. NHSI said the funding arrangements are yet to be confirmed.

An NHSI spokeswoman said: “Following increasing interest from trusts, we are in the process of developing an in house programme, which will enable more providers to access lean expertise and develop their own in house capability.

“All providers will be contacted when the application process is launched in mid January and the work will start in trusts in July 2018.”

If trusts have questions in advance of the application process they should email Julie.Fitzgerald1@nhs.net.