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Shared Insights - sharing learning and experience across healthcare

Browne Jacobson’s Shared Insights – connecting, talking, supporting, learning

Shared Insights is a fortnightly online forum for NHS professionals, hosted by Browne Jacobson on Teams. Sharing learning and experience across the health sector, listening to the experts and connecting NHS organisations to talk about the issues that matter to you.


To find out about our next event, register your interest:

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Key learning from previous Shared Insights

Damian Whitlam, a Partner and Amelia Newbold, Risk Management Lead, at Browne Jacobson discussed the legal test codified in Montgomery v Lanarkshire Health Board [2015] and the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on consent discussions.

Ed Pollard, a Partner at Browne Jacobson specialising in advisory law discussed consent in the context of patients who lack capacity to make a particular decision.

Tim Shurlock, Safety and Learning Lead and Alison Macefield, Associate Safety and Learning Lead shared the data on consent claims.

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David Edwards, Lawyer in the Official Solicitor’s (OS’) Healthcare and welfare team spoke with Chris Stark, Partner and Victoria Colclough, Senior Associate at Browne Jacobson about when NHS Trusts should consider going to the Court of Protection.

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Andy Hopkin provided legal advice on the steps organisations should take if they are subject to an investigation by the police, Health and Safety Executive or CQC. He was joined by Steve Murray, Head of Legal Services at University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, who spoke about how internal investigations sit alongside external ones. They set out practical advice based on their experiences.

Andy Hopkin is a Partner at Browne Jacobson specialising in criminal and regulatory work, defending public and private sector corporate bodies and individuals in prosecutions brought by the police and other regulators such as the HSE and CQC.

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Simon Tait and Nicola Evans led a discussion with Dr Robert Hunter, HM Senior Coroner for Derby and Derbyshire, Mr Gordon Clow, HM Assistant Coroner for Nottinghamshire and Miss Susie Hewitt MBE, Consultant in Emergency Medicine, University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust.

Simon Tait is a Partner and Head of Health, Advisory and Litigation at Browne Jacobson. He is an experienced advocate with expertise in coronial law and represents health and public sector organisations in complex inquests across a range of jurisdictions. Simon also sits as an Assistant Coroner for Yorkshire South East.

Nicola Evans is a Consultant at Browne Jacobson who has specialised in health law for more than two decades. She acts for a wide range of NHS organisations and NHS Resolution, advising on complex health law queries and representing NHS organisations at inquests. Nicola has 12 years’ experience working at senior legal within the NHS as Associate Director of Legal Services for a large acute hospital Trust.

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Ed Pollard, Partner at Browne Jacobson specialises in Healthcare Advisory law. His work includes inquests, mental health and mental capacity law, the court of protection, DoLS, fitness to practice and data protection issues. He spoke about the statutory and general Duty of Candour, the importance of embedding a “culture of candour” and the approach that Trusts should take to candour when dealing with issues arising from Covid 19.

Louise Pye, Head of Family Engagement at Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) highlighted how important it is to give families a voice and what HSIB has learnt from working with over 1,000 families during investigations into patient safety.

Clare Cooper, Family Liaison Officer and Isobel Thistlethwaite Head of Legal Services from Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, Amy Johnson Family Liaison Office and Andrew Coburn Head of Legal Services from Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust all provided us with the Trust perspective of Family Liaison Officers and how they work with their Trust’s legal teams.

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This session focused on effective triangulation of data and learning from claims with contributions from Amelia Newbold, Risk Management Lead at Browne Jacobson; Lorraine Cardill, Safety and Learning Lead at NHS Resolution; John Glendening, Head of Legal Services and Meg Haselden, Head of Nursing and Quality Governance at Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust; and Lorna Priestman, Director of Quality and Clinical Governance and Kathryn Fearn, Associate Director of Legal Services at University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust.

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The second victim and supporting clinicians through investigations, complaints, claims and inquests. Ed Pollard, a partner at Browne Jacobson specialising in healthcare spoke with Miss Susie Hewitt MBE, Consultant in Emergency Medicine of University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust and Isobel Thistlethwaite, Head of Legal Services at Nottingham University Hospital NHS Trust about the impact of investigations on clinicians and how to support them through the process.

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Ros Foster, Nicola Evans and Kathryn Fearn led a session on commissioning independent reviews when NHS organisations identify issues with a service, clinical department or clinician’s practice. 
Ros Foster is a partner at Browne Jacobson who has over 25 years’ experience advising a wide range of clients on regulatory and administrative law issues. Ros specialises in healthcare regulation and leads Browne Jacobson’s information law team.

Nicola Evans is a Consultant at Browne Jacobson who has specialised in health law for more than two decades. She acts for a wide range of NHS organisations and NHS Resolution, advising on complex health law queries and representing NHS organisations at inquests. Nicola has 12 years’ experience working at senior legal within the NHS as Associate Director of Legal Services for a large acute hospital Trust.

Kathryn Fearn is an experienced Solicitor-Advocate and is the Associate Director of Legal Services at University Hospitals Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust (UHDB). Kathryn Fearn shared learning from two external reviews commissioned at UHDB and the lessons learnt from that process.

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Helen Badger, Partner at Browne Jacobson specialising in employment within health, social care and education spoke about the law protecting whistleblowers, how to recognise a protected disclosure and the Trust’s statutory duties when dealing with whistleblowers. Alison Bell, the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian at University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust, highlighted some examples of best practice and common pitfalls when dealing with whistle-blowers.

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Julienne Vernon, Head of Dispute Resolution and Quality at NHS Resolution spoke with Paul Balen of Trust Mediation and Bev Hunt, Safety and Learning Lead (Mediation) at NHS Resolution about the benefits of mediation for Trusts.

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Karen Reynolds is a partner at Freeths who acts for patients and families and specialises in clinical negligence claims. Karen explained how claimant firms were being affected by the pandemic and what the future may hold for litigation post Covid-19. She shared her thoughts on how NHS Trusts can work collaboratively with patients and their representatives to deal with claims more effectively and efficiently while continuing to recognise the need to keep the injured patient at centre of any dispute or claim.

Sarah Stork, Senior Associate at Browne Jacobson, provided an update on how the courts are dealing with litigation during the Covid 19 pandemic.

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Sangita Bodalia, Head of Early Notification (Legal) at NHS Resolution explained how the Early Notification Scheme works, recent changes to the scheme in light of Covid -19 and the impact of these changes over the next 12 months. Katherine Hawes (Head of Maternity Investigations North) and Bethan Phelps (Maternity Investigator) gave an overview of the Maternity Investigation programme at Healthcare Safety Investigations Branch (HSIB). Scott Hislop (Principal National Investigator) gave an overview of the role of the National Investigations team at HSIB.

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Carl May-Smith, Partner at Browne Jacobson specialising in regulatory and criminal law with a particular focus on the health and care sector, spoke about guidance and risk assessments for PPE, documenting decisions about PPE strategy and responding to PPE shortages. Dr Robert Hunter, HM Senior Coroner for Derby and Derbyshire explained that new guidance to Senior Coroners was expected imminently about resuming inquests with social distancing in place, and set out likely plans for remote hearings going forwards.

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For further details about any of the Shared Insights sessions please contact Nicola Evans or Damian Whitlam.

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