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Raising concerns - guidance for managers

Read the guidance and resources we have available to managers when supporting staff when raising concerns.

9 April 2021

This section provides information and guidance that will support managers in the NHS to positively respond to concerns raised.

Training

The National Guardian’s Office in association with Health Education England, has launched their Freedom to Speak Up e-learning package – ‘Speak Up, Listen Up, Follow Up’ – for anyone who works in healthcare. Divided into three modules, it helps learners understand the vital role they can play in a healthy speaking up culture which protects patient safety and enhances worker experience. 

The 3rd and final session in the programme, Follow Up, is aimed at all senior leaders including executive board members (and equivalents), non-executive directors, and governors to help them understand their role in setting the tone for a good speaking up culture and how speaking up can promote organisational learning and improvement.

Follow Up comprises the following topics:

  • What is a healthy speaking up culture?
  • Benefits and drivers – including improved safety and organisational performance, reducing harm and costs, and worker retention
  • Measuring the effectiveness of a speaking up culture
  • The role of leaders in setting the tone
  • Supporting your Freedom to Speak Up Guardian

For more information and to access the programme, please visit the Freedom to Speak Up programme page.

Guidance

Whistleblowing: list of prescribed people and bodies as outlined under section 43F of the Public Interest Disclosure Act (PIDA) 1998. This list outlines who staff can make a disclosure to if issues remain unresolved after raising them using internal processes, or where individuals do not feel able to raise the issue with their employer. It is important that all workers are clear on the routes available to them to raise concerns both internally and externally to ensure they are covered by PIDA. Employers are advised to include reference to this list within local policies and guidance.

The National guardian's office has a range of learning and resources over on their website including e-learning, case studies and information sessions: Freedom to Speak Up learning and resources

Additional useful references

Guidance for clinical managers

Responding to concerns: a guide for doctors who manage staff - This BMA guidance aims to help managers of other healthcare professionals better manage concerns raised to them.