Max reflects on first year as chairman of Bradford Teaching Hospitals

AS HE clocks up his first year as chairman of one of the busiest hospital trusts in the region, Max Mclean has plenty to reflect on.

Now at the heart of a leadership team guiding Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust through the coronavirus pandemic, Max is in awe of the heroic efforts of staff during this, the most challenging phase in the history of the NHS.

He is also proud and extremely pleased for staff that the Trust has very recently received an overall ‘good’ rating from the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

“This was a very welcome and tremendous boost for our staff as they work tirelessly to care for patients with coronavirus, and it’s testament to their skills as valuable members of the NHS that we have achieved such a fantastic result – moving up from ‘requires improvement’ to ‘good’, said Max.

Max took up post as chairman on 1 May 2019 and his first job was to recruit two new non-executive directors – Julie Lawreniuk and Mohammed Hussain – to the Trust’s board, before turning his attention to the appointment of the new chief executive, Mel Pickup.

Through the year Max led the board in discussions around the proposal to create a wholly owned subsidiary company for the Trust’s estates and facilities services. The proposal led to three weeks of industrial action and ACAS reconciliation, and ultimately the board unanimously decided not to continue with the plans.

‘Good’ rating

“The dust had hardly settled before we got the call that the CQC were coming in to inspect the Trust,” said Max. “The amount of work involved in preparing information and the logistics of Inspectors visiting various sites and conducting numerous interviews was very hard work for colleagues, but it was all worthwhile to achieve our ‘good’ rating.”

And then into 2020 and coronavirus arrived, changing everything – both in the NHS and society as a whole.

“Having seen and heard how our wonderful staff have bravely risen to this unprecedented challenge, always keeping their care and compassion for patients at the heart of everything they do, I want to thank them all, for they are truly health heroes!”

Thinking about his first year in office, Max says there are many things that have really made him smile with pride at the amazing things happening at Bradford Teaching Hospitals.

“Just a few of the stand-out moments are the Project Search graduation providing employment opportunities for young people with learning disabilities; our annual Brilliant Bradford award winners and my visits to their workplaces, the 10th anniversary of our ground-breaking Listening for Life Centre, and the official opening of our Command Centre sealing our digital maturity as a modern, progressive organisation.

“Together with the rest of the NHS and care services, we’ll get through the coronavirus crisis. We’ve got a tremendous team here at Bradford and we have a bright future ahead. Here’s to year two!”



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Note to Editors:


  1. Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust:

Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust is responsible for providing hospital services for the people of Bradford and communities across Yorkshire. We serve a core population of around 500,000 and provide specialist services for 1.1 million people.

Our 5,500 staff work over several sites, including Bradford Royal Infirmary, which provides the majority of inpatient services, and St Luke’s Hospital, which predominantly provides outpatient and rehabilitation services. We also manage local community hospitals at Westwood Park, Westbourne Green, and Eccleshill.

In early 2017, a new £28 million wing opened at Bradford Royal Infirmary, part of a £75m investment to improve patient care across our hospitals over a five-year period. It provides world-class facilities for elderly care, children’s services, a state-of-the-art intensive care unit with increased single-room provision and a retail concourse.

The new wing is a continuation of our work to improve patient experience after our new £2 million neonatal unit officially opened in January 2015. Our maternity services were recently shortlisted for the Royal College of Midwives’ (RCM) Midwifery Service of the Year Award, recognising excellence and innovation in the provision of maternity care.

In 2017, we also completed a £2m refurbishment of our Emergency Department (ED) as part of an ambitious vision to create a more efficient acute medicine service for the people of Bradford. It has been designed to provide a slicker and more efficient service, with faster senior clinical involvement at an early stage in the patient pathway.

As a teaching hospital, we are at the forefront of education and development in healthcare, and have an excellent reputation for research performance. We are one of the leading centres in conducting applied research in the country, particularly in quality and safety, elderly care and rehabilitation.

The Trust is home to the Bradford Institute for Health Research (BIHR) where researchers have led the development, validation and implementation of the award-winning Bradford Electronic Frailty Index (eFI) which helps calculate an elderly person’s risk of disability, impairment, falls and complications of chronic diseases, as well as their diminishing independence and capability. This is now being used by 98 per cent of all GPs across the country.

Our award-winning Ophthalmology department is home to numerous worldwide clinical trials taking the lead in eye care research and we are one of only three sites in the United Kingdom to be enlisted in the Perioperative Enhanced Recovery Hip Fracture Care of Patients with Dementia (PERFECTED) study, which will investigate how the NHS can introduce better standards of care to improve outcomes for people with dementia.

The Trust has its own Bradford Hospitals Charity:

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