Corporate publications


East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust is committed to applying the highest standards of ethical conduct and integrity throughout its operations. We are also committed to delivering the highest standards of patient care and hence are focused on safeguarding the funds needed for this.

Bribery is defined within the Bribery Act 2010 as the giving or receiving of a financial or other advantage in exchange for improperly performing a relevant function or activity.

Under no circumstances is the giving, offering, receiving or soliciting of a bribe acceptable, and the Trust will not tolerate this in any form. This applies to all staff and non-executives, together with any external agents working or acting on behalf of the Trust.

The Trust’s zero tolerance approach to bribery, and commitment to the Bribery Act 2010, is set out in further detail within the Counter Fraud and Anti-Bribery Policy, and across a range of other Trust policies and procedural documentation. All staff, non-executives and other relevant parties are responsible for familiarising themselves with the requirements surrounding this and for complying with these at all times.

Any instances of non-compliance will be dealt with firmly and, in addition to possible internal disciplinary action, it is noted that a criminal offence under the Bribery Act 2010 could lead to up to 10 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.

With regard to external parties, we will not do business with anyone who does not support the Trust’s anti-bribery commitments, and we reserve the right to terminate any existing contracts where there is evidence that acts of bribery have been committed.

If you are in any doubt as to whether any conduct could amount to bribery, or if you have any concerns or suspicions regarding bribery being committed, please refer to the contact details within the Trust’s Counter Fraud and Anti-Bribery Policy, or the Whistleblowing Policy. Such a response is critical to the success of the Trust’s anti-bribery measures and we will support anyone raising an issue, provided that you are acting in good faith.

Joe Chadwick-Bell
Chief Executive

Within 28 days of an appointment being made, NHS trusts are required to publish a notice to name the appointed external auditor; the length of the appointment; the advice, or a summary of the advice received from the auditor panel; and, where it has not accepted that advice, the reasons why not.

East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust has appointed a local external auditor in line with the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. Following due process, Grant Thornton LLP has been appointed for a period of three years plus an option for two additional years commencing 1st April 2022. The appointment was made on the advice of an Auditor Appointment Panel who agreed the procurement process followed and recommended the appointment of the preferred bidder following evaluation. The Trust Board accepted the recommendation of the Panel and agreed the appointment at its meeting on 13th December 2022.

Our staff work hard to deliver the highest standards of healthcare to the people of East Sussex.

We provide safe and effective care to many thousands of people every year but sometimes, despite our best efforts, things can go wrong. By ‘being open’ we make a commitment to our patients, their families and carers to:

  • Respect your privacy and confidentiality
  • Explain exactly what went wrong, and where possible, why things went wrong
  • Let you tell us about your experience and ask questions.
  • Acknowledge any distress the incident may have caused and offer a sincere and compassionate apology for what has happened.
  • Discuss what is going to happen next and tell you what we will be implementing to prevent it from happening again.
  • Offer support and counselling services that may be able to help

You may feel anxious about talking through your experience with the people who have been treating you, especially if you need further treatment. We can assure you that this will not have a negative impact on your future care and you will continue to be treated with respect and compassion.

Talking through the issues may help you cope better in dealing with what has gone wrong if you understand why it went wrong in the first place.

If you do not feel comfortable discussing your concern with the staff involved with your care you can contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS).

Board of Directors’ Statement of Commitment to the principles of the code of practice for the prevention and control of health care associated infections.

The successful management, prevention and control of infection is recognised by the Trust as a key factor in the quality and safety of the care of our patients and those in the local health community and in the safety and wellbeing of our staff and visitors.

The board has collective responsibility for infection, prevention and control including minimising the risks of infection.

The board receives assurance that the Trust has mechanisms in place for minimising the risks of infection by means of the Trust Infection Prevention and Control Group and the Director of Infection Prevention and Control (DIPC). Assurance is provided by reports, audit reports, root cause analysis reports and verbal presentations from the DIPC.

The Trust Infection Prevention and Control Group is chaired by the DIPC. It is a sub-committee of the Board of Directors and the Board receives its minutes, annual report and exception reports. It has terms of reference and produces an annual plan, which are approved by the Board via the Quality and Safety Committee.

The DIPC is appointed by the board and reports directly to the Chief Executive and the Board. The post holder is a member of the Trust Senior Leaders Forum and produces an annual report. The DIPC is assisted in discharging the relevant Board level responsibilities by the Medical Director.

The Board is committed to the exemplary application of infection control practice within all areas of the Trust. To this end the Board will ensure that all staff are provided with access to infection control advice with a fully resourced infection control and occupational health service, access to personal protective equipment and training and policies that provide up-to-date infection control knowledge and care practices. Individual and corporate responsibility for infection control will be stipulated as appropriate in all job descriptions with individual compliance monitored annually through the appraisal systems and personal development plans.

The policies in place in the Trust and the arrangements set out above are to encourage, support and foster a culture of Clinical Unit responsibility for the prevention and control of infection in practice, with the aim of continually improving the quality and safety of patient care.

The Trust’s policies and practices in respect of infection prevention and control accord with the aims and objectives in national policy and strategy. This is aimed at ensuring the full confidence of the local population in the quality of care that the Trust delivers.

July 2016

Our commitment to minimising mixed sex (gender) accommodation

We remain committed to ensuring and protecting the privacy and dignity for all our patients. Part of this relates to sleeping accommodation.

In hospital, our sleeping accommodation is largely binary with male and female bays and a number of single side rooms. These are usually used either for infection control purposes or for other clinical reasons.

We will always try to treat patients in the “right” bed in the right specialty and will not mix except where it is in the overall best interest of the patient. This would usually relate to specialist treatment, for example intensive or critical care or specialist services such as acute stroke.

We monitor this very closely and report on it nationally to ensure transparency. If there is a need to mix, we will explain the reason why. We are committed to providing every patient with same gender accommodation, because it helps to safeguard their privacy and dignity when they are often at their most vulnerable.

We will not turn patients away just because a gender appropriate bed is not immediately available.

What does this mean for patients?

If you need help to use the toilet or take a bath (for example if you need a hoist or special bath) then you may be taken to a bathroom used at different times by different people including men, women, trans men and women and people who identify as non-binary. A member of staff will support you to ensure your privacy is maintained.

Our hospitals and services reflect society and you will meet people of a different gender to you during your stay with us. This may be on your ward or when moving around the hospital and will include our staff, other patients and visitors to patients.

You may also find that you will share some communal space, such as day rooms or dining rooms.

How will we measure success?

Every day we will make an assessment of all our areas and review any incident where same gender accommodation has not been provided. Should this occur, it will be rectified as soon as possible.

What do you do if you have concerns?

If you have any concerns or queries, please feel free to discuss this with the nurse in charge of your area or our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team.

Vikki Carruth
Chief Nurse and Director of Infection Prevention and Control
March 2022

East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust proposes to address the Audit Commission’s National Fraud Initiative as follows:

The Trust is required by law to protect the public funds it administers. It may share information provided to it with other bodies responsible for auditing or administering public funds, in order to prevent and detect fraud.

The Audit Commission appoints the auditor to audit the accounts of this Trust. It is also responsible for carrying out data matching exercises.

Data matching involves comparing computer records held by one body against other computer records held by the same or another body to see how far they match. This is usually personal information. Computerised data matching allows potentially fraudulent claims and payments to be identified. Where a match is found it indicates that there is an inconsistency which requires further investigation. No assumption can be made as to whether there is fraud, error or other explanation until an investigation is carried out.

The Audit Commission currently requires this Trust to participate in a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Audit Commission for matching for each exercise, and these are set out in the Audit Commission’s guidance, which can be found at

The use of data by the Audit Commission in a data matching exercise is carried out with statutory authority under its powers in Part 2A of the Audit Commission Act 1998. It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned under the Data Protection Act 1998.

Data matching by the Audit Commission is subject to a Code of Practice. This may be found at

For further information on the Audit Commission’s legal powers and the reasons why it matches particular information, see

For further information on data matching at this Trust, contact Stephen Hoaen, Head of Financial Services, Tel: (01424) 755470 Ext: 2311.

As far as the East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust Finance Purchase Ledger is concerned inclusion of this notice is all that is required to address the issue of disclosure.

Each year we produce a public report about the quality of our services.

Our quality account outlines the improvements we have made to our services in the past year as well as where and how we will improve our patient care in the coming year.

We would really value your feedback to help shape and inform our priorities. Please send your suggestions by using our contact us page or write to:

Company Secretary
East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust
Conquest Hospital
The Ridge, St Leonards-on-Sea
East Sussex, TN37 7RD

  • East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust are fully committed to providing the highest standards of child and adult protection and have undertaken a recent review in light of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) report. As well as this we work closely with our Local Safeguarding Board partners to scrutinise the Safeguarding provision and Safeguarding cases within our organisation.
  • The trust board is confident that the organisation meets the recommendations stated within the CQC report and makes the following declaration as requested by the Department of Health.
  • The trust meets the statutory requirements in relation to the Criminal Records Bureau checks. The Trust has a fully implemented Recruitment and Selection policy in place. The policy sets out the process for criminal records checks which the Trust will undertake for the appointment and ongoing employment of all relevant individuals within the trust.
  • Safeguarding policies and systems are up-to-date and robust, including a process for following up children and young people who miss outpatient appointments and a system for flagging when there are safeguarding concerns. The trust safeguarding policies are regularly reviewed providing information and assurance to the Board of Directors.
  • The trust provides safeguarding training to all staff during their induction to the organisation and level 2 training to all patient/client facing staff who may be in regular contact with children, young people, their parents and adults. In addition level 3 training is provided to staff who work predominantly with children, young people and parents. Regular updates of level 2 and 3 training are provided as per our Safeguarding Children Training Strategy. Recently level 3 safeguarding adults training is being implemented along with safeguarding supervision to support clinical staff who are working with complex cases in the Acute and Community.
  • The trust has named professionals who lead on issues in relation to safeguarding. They are clear about their role, have sufficient time and receive relevant support, supervision and training to undertake these roles.
  • There is a Board level Executive Director for safeguarding. The Board reviews safeguarding across the organisation at least once a year and has robust audit programmes in place to assure it that safeguarding systems and processes are working effectively.
  • The Board takes the issue of safeguarding extremely seriously and receives an annual report upon safeguarding provision and themes from a local and national perspective.