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Forth Valley Royal Hospital

Forth Valley Royal Hospital

National Award for Environmental Excellence® - Gold Award

The challenge

Forth Valley Royal Hospital in Larbert is one of the most modern and well-equipped hospitals in Europe. Purpose built to provide the very highest standard of accommodation and facilities for patients, visitors and staff, the Hospital has 25 wards, 16 operating theatres and 4,000 rooms with 860 beds/day care spaces across an area the size of 9 football pitches. Externally the grounds of the Hospital have been designed, in conjunction with the Green Exercise Partnership, to enable health improvement for staff, patients, visitors and local people, with way marked trails, accessible paths and an outdoor teaching area for schools.

Staff at the hospital comprise of local NHS staff, Serco staff (who provide the facilities management support services) and volunteers

In May 2018 the Hospital was audited against the National Award for Environmental Excellence® to provide them with a route map to continuous improvement in environmental management, positioning themselves as an exemplar of environmental best practice.

Our approach

The audit consisted of desk-based assessments of the Hospital’s policy documents and a site visit to assess existing processes and practices.

NHS Forth Valley and Serco, provided a of total of 26 documents for review. This included an Annual Energy Report; Corporate Social Responsibility Policy; Health, Safety and Environment Policy Statement and Waste Strategy. These documents were assessed prior to the site visit and notes were made for further review and discussion during the site visit.

The site visit started with a presentation by Forth Valley Royal Hospital staff which provided an overview of their systems and auditor led questions revealed how practices are managed around cleansing, energy saving, waste management, staff training and community engagement. A walkaround the site allowed the auditors to visually inspect the internal and external environment and ask any additional questions to ensure the elements were scored appropriately.

The audit provided clear evidence that Forth Valley Royal Hospital is committed to making its environment safe, clean and welcoming for staff and visitors whist making significant efforts in sustainability and working with and for the local community.

Many of the five sets of criteria of administration , external environment, internal environment, waste management and community participation scored well but some elements had particular stand out:

  • Staff recognition - The effort the Hospital puts into the recognition of staff efforts, through their staff awards
  • Community participation - The various health programmes co-ordinated in the grounds of the hospital including a Cardic Rehab project and Woodland Activity for people with early stage dementia
  • Signposting throughout the Hospital – There is clear and easy to follow internal and external signage right across the site
  • Waste Management – The waste management areas were particularly clean and tidy and the waste movement practices highly efficient, well above the norm for a hospital of its size
  • Cleanliness standards– These were found to be high throughout the Hospital

The audit found no primary recommendations which required immediate attention, but secondary recommendations were made to encourage continual improvement, these included:

  • General waste eternal bins - Review number of bins on site to ensure the quantity is appropriate to the size of the area being served
  • Energy saving - Continue to trial or carry out feasibility studies on energy-saving practices, and renewable energies, and implement viable initiatives
  • Internal recycling bins - Increase visibility and size of bins in both public facing and staff areas

How we made a difference

The Hospital was awarded a Gold Award to recognise its effective waste management, internal and external cleanliness and its engagement with the local community. This is the first Gold Award to be given to a hospital site.

The award auditing process highlighted the hospital’s achievements in delivering excellence in environmental quality at its facilities and its ongoing commitment to engaging with the local community and patients - from development of an arts programme in the hospital and working with local schools, to effectively clearing outdoor areas of litter and very well managed waste management practices.

This Award sets Forth Valley Hospital up as an exemplar of NHS practice – a place that takes a holistic and partnership approach to their environmental management – and provides them with a mechanism for communicating this to their stakeholders. Additionally, the audit has established a benchmarking process to show year on year improvement enabling them to measure themselves against other NHS and public sector properties. It also provides them with a system for flagging up any change or drop in standards, i.e., where waste management practices or ground maintenance standards dip it will show this both quantitatively and qualitatively to allow this to be addressed promptly and efficiently.

Whilst the provision of first-class Facilities Management services is core to what we do at Forth Valley Royal Hospital, Serco’s goal is to ensure that our contribution reaches beyond the boundaries of the hospital and positively impacts on the wider community we serve and are proud to be part of. This accolade speaks volumes not only about the hard work and commitment of every member of the Forth Valley Royal Hospital team, but also once again highlights the benefits of true partnerships.

Tony McLaughlin, Serco Contract Director

We are delighted that Forth Valley Royal Hospital is the first hospital in Scotland to achieve gold in this national award. Our staff are passionate about maintaining high standards, so they can provide a clean and caring environment for patients, visitors and staff. It’s brilliant to see that their hard work being recognised with this prestigious award.

Jonathan Procter, Director of Facilities & Infrastructure, NHS Forth Valley

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