Whistle Blowing Policy

Executive Summary

Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is committed to achieving the highest possible ethical standards by encouraging openness and honesty in the workplace. The Trust will create and actively support a culture where members of staff are encouraged and empowered to raise concerns without fear of recrimination or victimisation in any way.

The term “Whistleblowing” is the disclosure of information by an employee or worker which relates to some danger, fraud or other illegal or unethical conduct in the workplace. The Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 governs the making of disclosures concerning workplace activities and is intended to protect employees who blow the whistle on bad practice from being subjected to any detriment or unfairly dismissed as a result. In providing this protection, the Act also reinforces the obligations of all persons employed by the Trust not to disclose to external sources any trade secrets or confidential information acquired during the course of their employment, unless they fall within the qualifying criteria for protection disclosures.

The Whistleblowing Policy provides advice and guidance to Workers and sets out the procedure by which employees and others that work at the Trust can report concerns about workplace malpractices relating to any of the protected matters specified in the Policy. There is also information about the rights of Workers to raise the matter externally if they are not satisfied with the Trust’s response after the internal procedures have been exhausted.

 

Introduction

Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust provides a public service to the local community. It is funded by public funds and so recognises its duty and commitment to ensuring that all activities in which it is involved are carried out in a way that promotes the highest standards of patient care and business practice.

All of us at one time or another may have concerns about what is happening at work. Usually these concerns are easily resolved. However, when you are troubled about something that involves a danger (to patients, public or colleagues), professional misconduct or financial malpractice, it can be difficult to know what to do.

You may be worried about raising such an issue, perhaps feeling that it is none of your business or that it is only a suspicion. You may feel that raising the matter would be disloyal to colleagues, to your manager or to the Trust. You may have said something but found that you have spoken to the wrong person or raised the issue in the wrong way and are not sure what, if anything, to do next.

Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust encourages a climate of openness and a dialogue with all its employees and others that work at the Trust. Free expression by individuals regarding their genuine concerns is welcomed by management as a contribution towards protecting patients, staff, and the public and for improving our services. The Trust is committed to dealing responsibly, openly and professionally with employees and workers.

If something is troubling you that you think we should know about or look into. Then, please use this procedure. If you are worried, we would prefer you raise your worries when it is just a concern, rather than wait for proof.

This policy applies to all individuals who undertake work for Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals whether full time, part time, bank workers, self employed, employed through an agency, a contractor or as a volunteer.

Whistleblowing is important to protect and reassure the workforce, and to maintain a healthy working culture and an effective organisation.

It is expected that individuals behaviour and how an individual conducts oneself in the workplace, supports the Trust’s Values (4P’s).

 

Policy Details

Download: PDF version
Compiled by: Danny Hariram, Deputy Director of Workforce and OD
Ratified by: Trust Executive Committee
Date Ratified: April 2014
Date Issued: November 2014
Review Date: April 2017
Target Audience: All staff
Contact name: Danny Hariram, Deputy Director of Workforce and OD

 

See also:

  • Dignity at Work Policy
  • Disciplinary Policy and Procedure
  • Fraud & Corruption Policy
  • Incident Reporting Policy
  • Poor Performance Policy
  • Maintaining High Professional Standards in the Modern NHS – A Framework for Medical Staff
  • Safeguarding Adult Policy