"Appointment of Chief Executive"

About: South London And Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

(as the patient),

Despite the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust paying to train service users to sit on recruitment and selection panels, they decided not to have a service user sitting on the panel to appoint it's new Chief Executive.

This is appalling for a trust which claims "everything we do is for the benefit of our service users".

Will they have an SU on the forthcoming panels for the Director of Nursing and Director of HR?

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Responses

Response from Bill Berry, Patient Experience Manager, Patient Public Involvement Team Organisation and Community Directorate, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Service user involvement is something that is very important to us at South London and Maudsley. We’re always looking for new, innovative and better ways to do this. This includes how we involve people who have used our services in recruiting staff.

For the recruitment of our new Chief Executive, service users were involved through our Council of Governors, which also includes carers and frontline clinical staff. We also train and involve service users in recruitment panels and assessment centres. The important thing for us, however service users are involved, is that it is done in a way that is genuine and meaningful rather than tokenistic. We constantly review this and we are always open to trying new approaches.

I would be very happy to have a chat with you about this in more detail. You can call me on 0203 2282435, alternatively you can contact me at: Zoe.reed@slam.nhs.uk

Regards

Zoe Reed

Executive Director Strategy and Business Development

South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust

Trust HQ

Maudsley Hospital

Denmark Hill

London

SE5 8AZ

Tel: 02032282435

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Update posted by Chair of Trustwide Involvement Group Operations (the patient)

Thank you for your response.

Although the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust pay to train service users to sit on recruitment and selection panels, they decided not to have a service user sitting on the panel to appoint its new Chief Executive.

Now it has emerged that the Trust has appointed an interim Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development without a service user on the panel, despite claiming "everything we do is for the benefit of our service users".

You don't give examples of what you consider to be “genuine and meaningful” or what you consider to be “tokenistic”, but to me the implication is that a SU sitting on a recruitment panel for these senior posts is tokenistic. Perhaps you could explain the difference between the appointment of the Head of Social Care for SLaM, which had a SU on the panel, and these other senior appointments.

In my first and only meeting with you earlier this year I felt you had not one positive thing to say about SU involvement within the Trust which suggests to me that you have little or no grasp of the purpose or value of SU involvement and I find your attempts seemingly to lecture me about involvement patronising at best.

In desperation I wrote you a 5 page letter about the many and varied problems I was experiencing with regard to involvement within the Trust. If you are serious about a dialogue as offered here, can I suggest that you start by responding to my letter from early March 2013?

The most important point that I would like the Trust to act on is: will SLaM have an SU on the forthcoming panels for the Director of Nursing and Director of HR?

Updates, changes and questions related to this story