A trust facing serious questions about its working culture has had a dramatic rise in the number of concerns raised about issues such as harassment and bullying.
In the first quarter of 2021-22, staff raised 84 incidents to East of England Ambulance Service Trust’s Freedom to Speak Up guardian, compared with only eight in the first quarter of 2020-21.
Half of the cases raised to the guardian this year involved issues of harassment, bullying or concerns about behaviours or relationships, according to a report to the trust board.
However, the biggest single area of concern — with 35 cases — was “the inconsistent applications of processes in policies” and only one out of 84 cases involved patient safety or quality.
The report said: “Staff across the organisation are exhausted and express concern at continuing under this pressure… staff continue to report that the slow pace of change leaves them with little confidence of lasting change.”
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Source: HSJ, 8 September 2021