Healthcare Estates Management Conference: Building and Maintaining the Future of Our Health
The NHS estate in England alone has a floor space that would cover the City of London ten times over, according to 2013 NHS Information Centre data. The total floor area of trust and primary care trust buildings is estimated to be around 28.4 million square meters, and the land owned by the NHS totals 6.9 million hectares. The 2014 NHS Estate Efficiency Review found that at least £1.5 billion could be saved through better management of these assets. With Simon Stevens’ 2014 Five Year Forward View calling for £22 billion of savings across the NHS by 2020, more efficient estate management could be crucial for the NHS in coming years. Investment in new facilities and innovative technology can provide rapid improvements to patient care. Government and hospital trusts have recognised this and various initiatives are being planned and implemented, with the aim of creating economic savings, improving efficiency and modernising the NHS estate.
Join us for Healthcare Estates Management: Building and Maintaining the Future of Our Health, where high level speakers will discuss the challenges around achieving savings, efficiencies and modernisation through better management of the NHS estate. Topics covered will include the sale of surplus land, making the estate more cost efficient, flexible use and maintenance of facilities, and using technology to make the NHS safer and easier for both patients and clinicians.
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The healthcare estate accounts for a significant portion of NHS spending, with a direct cost of £7 billion per annum, it is the third largest expenditure after staff and drugs. The 2014 Department of Health Part A: Strategic framework for the efficient management of healthcare estates and facilities, that these figures are taken from, suggests that the estate has important contributions to make in delivering savings and reducing running costs. It goes on to state that “business as usual” is simply not an option when it comes to supporting the future of a sustainable NHS.
The 2014 Strategic framework recommends that Foundation Trusts (FTs) and Trusts should have a regularly updated asset management system that allows estate managers to identify unused or under-used space that could be reduced or reallocated. According to data submitted to the Department of Health in 2014, just over 650 hectares of Trust and FT estate was surplus or potentially surplus, and 59 sites were identified as available for disposal. The value of underused assets in the acute and mental health sector was valued at around £7.5 billion by Monitor’s 2013 report Closing the NHS Funding Gap.
Established in 2013, the NHS Property Services have successfully released some of the capital associated underused estates, returning any savings or profits made back into the NHS. In its first two years the organisation has reduced the running cost of the estates it manages by £78 million and generated £97 million in cash receipts. One of the properties sold through this initiative, former residential care facility Bassetts Campus, has since been transformed into residential buildings. NHS Property Services Head of Planning, Andrew Strange, “The sale of Bassetts Campus to London Square has the potential to bring an empty site and a locally important building back into use, as well as providing a number of homes in response to London’s recognised need for housing.”
As well as being economically advantageous, making changes to the healthcare estate offers the potential for improved efficiency across the NHS. The One Public Estate programme, run by the Cabinet Office and Local Government Association, aims to do just that, encouraging local councils to work with central government on a geographical basis in order to share buildings and services. Estate optimisation also forms part of the 2014 Strategic Framework, which suggests that FTs and trusts should explore the possibilities for colocation in order to maximise service benefits and improve efficiencies. The report states that this can be achieved through more effective working practises, workspaces that encourage greater productivity, collaboration between teams, and encouraging cultural change across the organisation.
As well as utilising remaining NHS buildings more effectively, fully maintaining those buildings is an important focus for efficient estate management. Almost £800 million of maintenance work is required on the Scottish NHS estate, the 2014 Annual State of NHS Assets and Facilities Report found, and investment of some kind is required in 40% of Scotland’s NHS estate. Just 59% of buildings were described as being in good condition, with 4% in unsatisfactory condition and in need of major investment. Scottish Health Secretary Shona Robison said, “Investment in infrastructure will help us make best use of the NHS’s finite resources – reducing the cost of maintaining older and less suitable buildings.”
As part of encouraging increased efficiency, the NHS has recognised the need to move its estates towards a more environmentally sustainable model. According to government figures, the NHS is one of the UK’s most energy-intensive organisations, with a carbon footprint of 18 million tonnes of CO2 and an annual energy bill of £750 million. In 2009 the NHS’s Sustainability Development Unit set out targets to reduce these emissions by 10% by 2015, however, the unit’s latest figures suggest that the organisation will achieve less than half of that target. To address this issue, the ‘green fund’ was announced in January 2015, in which the UK’s Green Investment Bank (GIB) and De Lage Landen will invest £25 million each to support NHS energy efficiency projects. GIB estimates that energy installing efficiency measures across the UK could quickly cut the NHS’s energy usage by 20%.
Modernising the NHS estate offers the possibility for both improving efficiency and refining the quality of care that patients receive. The 2014 Strategic Framework, highlights the importance of estates managers being open to the potential of technology to provide innovative property solutions. An example of this is the iAuditor, which can be used alongside a tablet device to carry out site based audits on the condition and risks of a building in a fraction of the time it would take to do so using a paper-based method. Matt Smith, Area Health, Safety, Security and Fire Manager for the East Midlands, said, “This piece of kit literally halves the amount of time it would usually take to carry out the inspection and then write up the report.” To promote the development of this kind of technology the Government announced the Safer Hospitals, Safer Wards Technology Fund in 2013, which offers FTs and Trusts access to a £260 million technology fund. This fund is designed to support rapid progression from paper-based systems to integrated digital care records and ePrescribing.
Delegates attending Healthcare Estates Management: Building and Maintaining the Future of Our Health will learn about the arguments around managing the healthcare estate, from reducing surplus to ensuring the efficiency and modernisation of some of the country’s most important assets.
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- Size and cost of the NHS estate
- Importance of asset management
- Benefits of identifying and disposing of surplus estates
- Success of the NHS Property Services
- How sharing facilities can create estate optimisation
- Importance of infrastructure investment on remaining estate
- The importance of estates managers being open to the potential of technology to provide innovative property solutions
- Improving service delivery and patient care
- How to build a more sustainable NHS estate
- Using the ‘green fund’ to help meet NHS sustainability targets
- Innovations in healthcare technology
- Modernising the NHS estate
Who should attend?
Director of Estates, Director of Estates & Facilities Management, Director of Facilities, Director of Operations, Finance Directors, Director Property Services, Education Directors, Estate Managers, Estates Development Managers, Energy Managers, Estates Operations Managers, Facilities Managers, Group Estates Planners, Head of Estates, Project Managers, University Estate Surveyors, University Building Surveyors, Development and Project Support Managers, Development Directors, Asset Management Officer, Assets & Business Manager, Architect, Architect Director, Assistant Director Commissioning and Resources, Principals, Assistant Principals, Associates, Associate Director, Asset Managers, Building Surveyor, Bursars, Business Managers, Campus Officers, Capital & Planning Managers, Capital and Land Development Managers, CEO / Executive Principal, Finance Officers, Deputy Directors, Deputy Headteachers.