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Investigation into the robustness of processes – NHS reports – Jimmy Savile

The client

The Secretary of State for Health, Health Sector

Challenge

Management of reviews.

The Secretary of State for Health commissioned Verita to support Kate Lampard overseeing investigations into matters relating to Jimmy Savile across NHS organisations.

Our challenge was to assure the Secretary of State that the processes underpinning the production of 32 high-profile reports were robust. Due to the need for the reports to be published, they were required to stand up to scrutiny from a multitude of stakeholders including victims, the media, past and present employees at the organisations involved and the general public.

Scope

The work was inherently political. Its public nature meant that we involved a number of targeted, third-party organisations.

Process

The independent oversight involved devising an assurance framework using Verita’s extensive experience of conducting investigations and governance reviews. The team supporting Kate Lampard were managing director Ed Marsden, partner Barry Morris, consultant Jessica Heinemann and administrator Chloe Taylor.

Assurance was provided to our commissioner through auditing the compliance with our framework across each of the 32 investigation teams via regular monitoring and communication. Across the project’s two-year life an experienced team of Verita consultants and administrative staff used the framework to advise the investigation teams on conducting high quality investigations. Compliance to the framework was monitored rigorously via a programme of weekly progress reports alongside verbal, electronic and face-to-face communication, as necessary. The investigation teams were able to consult us on any difficulties arising during their work.

As part of the work Verita was commissioned to recommend actions for the future in a lessons learned review. This culminated in the production of a 150 page report for the Secretary of State advising on whether and how any NHS-wide guidelines or procedures need to be changed. For this aspect of the work our methodology involved collecting mostly qualitative data via meetings and interviews with commentators and practitioners, reviewing relevant documents, articles, research literature and reports, a programme of hospital visits and discussion events with academics and experts.

Findings

Our findings from the ‘lessons learned’ work have implications on key healthcare leadership issues across security and access arrangements, the role and management of volunteers, safeguarding, raising complaints and concerns, fundraising and charity governance and the observance of due process and good governance.

Testimonial/feedback

“Let me first pass on that SoS was very impressed with both the reports and with how everything was handled.”
Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Health

“I wanted to write to thank you and your team at Verita for your excellent work
overseeing the NHS investigation reports and for your excellent Lessons Learned
Report… Please do pass on my sincere thanks to Ed Marsden and his team at Verita for their contribution to this important work.”

Secretary of State for Health

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