Case Studies

Steven Peart

Steven Peart recently joined The Roxton Practice as the Managing Director after making the move from private sector to public sector in 2009.

I never thought I would end up in a primary care management role, but the job appealed to me because the doctors and CCG managers in North East Lincolnshire do things differently and they’re very forward thinking.

Previously, I worked in various industry roles as a qualified accountant for wallpaper and bathroom manufacturers, drug companies, a press agency and a shipping firm. Taking the opportunity to work locally, I moved into the NHS in 2009 as a finance manager for the then Care Trust Plus.

I was given plenty of opportunities to develop my career outside a finance role during over five years. In particular, I worked on a project to develop a new children’s unit in Grimsby Hospital’s A&E department. I worked as part of a team across commissioners and providers to develop a new service that met the needs of the patient while enabling savings of approximately £450,000 to be generated for the CCG.

I’ve also been able to use my experience from the private sector to help GP practices to put forward business cases and identify ways which the NHS use its money more efficiently, without compromising on care.  

I’m looking forward to using the experience I’ve already gained in the NHS to help The Roxton Practice and other GP practices in the area to work smarter.

Helen Kenyon

Helen began her career in the NHS as an administrator assistant and currently works as the Deputy Chief Executive for North East Lincolnshire CCG.

I took my first job in the NHS with the intention of staying for 18 months and 14 years later I’m still here.

My career aspiration was originally to become a landscape gardener and I had plans to complete a design course at college. But the chemicals used in gardening proved too intensive and I found I was allergic to many of them. In a bid to save some money before college, and taking a break from my gardening job (and the chemicals), I joined the local NHS organisation in Doncaster as an administrator assistant in the internal audit department. I was soon offered a permanent position and with the offer of college training I decided to keep gardening as a hobby.

I trained to become an AAT-qualified accountant and progressed up the ranks working within internal audit. I achieved Charted Institute Management Association qualifications too.

I applied for a finance manager role when the NHS was forming Primary Care Trusts around 1999; this is when I became more involved in the commissioning side of the NHS. It wasn’t part of my role at the time but it was an area I was interested in and the organisation encouraged me to get involved as it could see the benefits of connecting my financial knowledge with commissioning.

It was enjoyable to learn about different aspects of the NHS and I was able to use this knowledge further in my role as Associate Director of Finance and Commissioning when the local NHS was the Care Trust Plus. As the landscape of the NHS changed again I began working more closely with GPs to help them apply for Clinical Commissioning Group status and set up the governance arrangements.  I expressed an interest in the role of Deputy Chief Executive and was awarded the role after undergoing the recruitment process.

I didn’t honestly think I would still be working in North East Lincolnshire when I started in the NHS but when you find like-minded people and a supportive environment where you’re encouraged to reach your potential, that’s when you’re going to stay.

Dr Arun Nayyar

Dr Arun Nayyar is GP representative on the CCG partnership board. He has been working in primary care for ten years after originally training in general surgery.

I worked in India for six months after qualifying as a general surgeon and completing my post-graduate training and in 1997 moved to the UK to learn new skills and further my career.

My first job in the UK was as a locum doctor in Stockton-on-Tees. Shortly after that I started a basic surgical training job in Grimsby and gained more experience over the next two years before moving to Scotland in 1999. I spent a year and a half developing my skills further and moved to Norwich where I had the opportunity to move into surgical registrar training.

I returned to Grimsby in 2000 to start the GP training scheme. Over the two-and-a-half-year training scheme I worked at James Street Practice in Louth, Grimsby hospital and Littlefield Lane Surgery in Grimsby. Initially it was challenging, having specialised so much, to then relearn what was required for general practice. 

In 2004 I took my first role in primary care as a GP at The Roxton Practice and was always encouraged to get involved in leading changes and developments in health services, especially as a young GP.

I helped to set up and manage a group of young GPs called Young Grimsby Docs that offered peer support and gave young GPs in the area a voice. I no longer sit on the group but it continues to play a key role.

Along with four other GPs I helped to establish a dedicated GP out of hours company, Core Care Lincs. The previous Care Trust Plus wanted local GPs to run the out of hours service and put the challenge us to find a solution. It’s still running and continues to provide good quality out of hours care for local people.

These are just two examples of forward-thinking work that was, and continues to be, encouraged in the area. Both opportunities showed me if you want to change things you have to get involved, rather than sitting on the sidelines. 

Thanks to my experience and previous voluntary work on the Care Trust Plus governance forum I was successful in my application to sit on the CCG’s partnership board. It’s challenging having a leadership role and seeing patients too, but I think it’s important that clinicians are involved in improving services.

I would recommend anyone doing their GP training to consider working in North East Lincolnshire – we’ve had many successes (Core Care Lincs being just one example) and offer a lot of opportunities for career development.

Jackie France 

Jackie France has forged a successful career in IT management after joining the NHS Youth Training Scheme 30 years ago.

Having left school at 16 I was fortunate to get onto the NHS Youth Training Scheme. At the time the scheme was supported by Grimsby Hospital, now part of Northern Lincolnshire & Goole NHS Foundation Trust, and this enabled me to attend college on a day release basis and study subjects that I was really interested in. After completing the two year programme I achieved great qualifications and fulfilled an ambition to become a Medical Secretary within three years.

It wasn’t until the early nineties that IT services began to really develop within the NHS. I was keen to learn more and try something new, so when the opportunity of assistant for the Director of IT came up I jumped at the chance.

I gained a vast amount of experience in this role from setting up an IT service desk, training on IT systems including Patient Administration and A&E systems and implementing the Nursing Information System, following which I became heavily involved in project management for IT projects at the hospital.

This experience led me into different project management roles from reviewing patient administration, implementing Choose & Book and various service redesign and transformational projects, and latterly was Programme Manager for the administration elements of the National Programme for IT.

I played a key role in the Scunthorpe, Goole and Grimsby hospitals merger and was responsible for developing a centralised patient administration function across all sites, which I then managed for three years. While I was really pleased to have gained so much experience at the hospital, my passion for IT led me to apply for the role of Head of Strategy for the Care Trust Plus (as it was then). Just as I moved into this new role the Government announced its plan to restructure the NHS and develop clinical commissioning groups (CCGs).

This presented a new opportunity for me and I applied for the new role of IMT (Information Management and Technology) Programme and Business Manager in the North Yorkshire and Humber Commissioning Support Unit (CSU). This organisation provides various business support services to CCGs, GPs and a variety of different health and social care providers. I lead a team of IT engineers, trainers and project managers who deliver day-to-day IT support and works with customers to develop IT strategies and deliver local and national IT projects across the whole of the Humber region.

The best thing about working in this area means that I can see the impact my work has. I like to feel like I’m doing something for my community and making a difference to people around me; that’s what working in the NHS is all about.

Best of all, everyone who works in the NHS here is part of one big community, we sit in different organisations and have different responsibilities but ultimately we have the same goal and we’re all motivated to make a real difference for our patients and service users.

Debbee Walker

Using the skills and experience she gained abroad, Debbee Walker now works in the NHS helping to improve services for patients.

My journey to become a service manager in the NHS was certainly a varied one!

After graduating from university in 1998, I spent some time travelling and settled in the Netherlands for a few years. I started off as a business development secretary working for an American oil and gas company. International speakers were highly sought after, so when I’d picked up the language I was headhunted to work for a Dutch company that also worked in the industry drilling oil from the sea bed. I supported the business development team and was the personal assistant to the company president before moving back to England in 2004.

After returning I spent a short time working for a local industrial auctioneer; it could be quite contentious and was certainly hard work. When I became pregnant with my first child it was an opportunity to rethink my career and consider what I really wanted from a job. I didn’t want to work for the ‘fat cats’, but I wanted job satisfaction of a different kind.

My first taste of the NHS was in the radiology department of the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital working as a part-time secretary. I was fortunate to be put on the medical terminology course which allowed me to progress into the role of a medical secretary for an orthopaedic consultant. From there I was promoted to service manager for the Head and Neck Unit and a restructure in 2011 led me to become a business manager for the Surgery and Critical Care Department.

At this stage there was very little I could learn about operational management and I was keen to become more involved in service redesign, which was a small element of the job that I really enjoyed.

Funnily enough at the time a role came up in the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)  as a service manager within the service planning and redesign team. For the last 8 months I’ve been working on the other side of the fence looking at ways to improve care for people in the local area through the care we commission from hospitals, community services etc.

I’ve always been mentored and had the opportunity to go on training courses which has enabled me to grow my career. This year I’ll be taking part in an NHS Leadership Programme which is supported by the CCG.

If you work in the NHS you have to be prepared to change; I went through three restructures during my time at Grimsby hospital and the political landscape always affects how we work. But now I’ve got the job satisfaction I’ve always wanted. After living and working in a country where there is no NHS, I’m proud to be part of it.