Emergency (image by melschmitz http://mrg.bz/YTjeLM)

Emergency planning and business continuity

Our hospitals deal with emergencies every day – but sometimes we can face a situation that is outside our day-to-day capabilities or which causes significant disruption to services.

This type of situation can be categorised as a Major Incident, Critical Incident or a Business Continuity Incident, and we are obliged by the UK Resilience – Civil Contingencies Act 2004 and the NHS England Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) framework to have plans and procedures in place to enable us to respond quickly and effectively in such circumstances.

In order to meet these requirements, the Trust has an Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) Policy and a Business Continuity Management Policy which define the framework for the development and implementation of emergency and business continuity plans and procedures.

These plans and procedures are designed to minimise the impact of incidents and so ensure that the Trust continues to function at an acceptable level to provide the best possible outcomes for patients during an incident through delivery of the Trust’s strategic and operational plans

They are tested and updated regularly to make sure that the Trust recognises the full range of risks it faces and is prepared for anything from localised flooding to a terrorist attack that causes large-scale casualties.

The Business Continuity Management Policy identifies critical services and, with the Business Continuity Plan and Service Level Plans, sets out the processes to follow to maintain the running of these services during a period of disruption, and to manage the return to normality.

All NHS Trusts are required to undertake an annual self-assessment against NHS England Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response (EPRR) Core Standards and rate current compliance with each standard. This is then reported to the Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS England.

For more information about our contingency arrangements please email emergency planning and business continuity manager Mark Stevens.

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