Westminster Health Forum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7538736244 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7951044809.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk

Next steps for NHS estates - funding, infrastructure modernisation and optimisation, net-zero, and learning from the response to the pandemic

Morning, Thursday, 11th March 2021

***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***

This conference will examine the key policy priorities for the management of NHS estates as the Government commits to building new hospitals and improving healthcare infrastructure.

The discussion at a glance:

  • funding and allocation of investment
  • meeting net zero and sustainability targets
  • optimising the role of the NHS estate in healthcare provision
  • the challenges posed by the pandemic and learning from implementation of the Nightingale hospitals

The agenda:

  • Optimising the NHS estate - progress and remaining issues
  • The role of the NHS estate in responding to the pandemic - provision of safe care to patients and COVID-free hubs, responding to demand, and the development of Nightingale hospitals
  • Priorities for funding - investment allocation, NHS surplus land disposal, and assessing the scope for further efficiencies
  • Effective public-private partnerships and key issues and opportunities going forward
  • Improving environmental sustainability and next steps for working towards net-zero targets
  • Technology within the NHS estate - modernisation, improving integration and utilisation, maximising the contribution to better health outcomes, and lessons from COVID-19
  • Priorities for health infrastructure - identifying need, effective strategy formulation, efficient new development and delivery, and addressing variation
  • Next steps for strategic estates policy

A scan of relevant developments and background:

  • the Healthcare Infrastructure Plan - which:
    • set out a five-year programme of investment and strategic approach to improving healthcare infrastructure
    • announced an additional investment of £2.8bn capital funding for hospital infrastructure
  • Prime Minister confirms funding to prepare the NHS for winter - £300m for NHS trusts to upgrade A&E facilities and improve capacity
  • the Naylor review - Sir Robert Naylor’s recommendations on NHS property and estates and the Government’s response
  • Review of capital expenditure in the NHS - the NAO review of capital expenditure in the NHS which looked at the rising costs and age of the NHS estate, the allocation of capital investment and access to capital funds, as well as the challenge of delivering an effective capital strategy

The discussion in detail:

  • the Healthcare Infrastructure Plan:
    • progress in delivery and looking forward - including in the context of the impact of COVID-19
    • achieving goals - assessing:
      • how the Plan can deliver improvements in safety
      • priorities for new building projects
      • its role in supporting the systems approach taken in the NHS Long Term Plan
  • funding - looking at financial priorities at a local, regional and national level:
    • impact - examining additional government funding put forward for NHS infrastructure, including the six initial builds and further schemes that are planning delivery in 2025 to 2030
    • primary care infrastructure - priorities for enabling care closer to home, with discussion expected on the role that private finance can play in primary care estate development
    • surplus NHS land:
      • progress in disposal - and strategies for incentives taking into account regional disparities in prices
      • reinvestment - options for proceeds to go back into the estate
      • collaboration - the way forward for closer working between NHS organisations and local planning authorities
    • capital expenditure - with discussion expected on issues highlighted in the NAO review on rising costs, the age of the NHS estate, and capex allocation, access and strategy
  • environmental sustainability - looking at challenges, options and best practice for:
    • climate targets - meeting meet the aim of the NHS being net- zero by 2040, with some NHS trusts declaring climate emergencies
    • waste management - across NHS estates, looking at single-use PPE including during the pandemic, the role of procurement, and learning from successful waste management initiatives
  • COVID-19 - and what can be learned and applied going forward:
    • the impact on the NHS estates - assessing the approaches taken to ensure local services have enough capacity to deal with increased demand
    • Nightingale hospitals - their role in the national response to the pandemic, future options for repurposing and as back-up for future pandemic wave, and value for money
    • safety and providing care - looking at public engagement on continuity of care and safe use of services, including establishment of COVID-free cancer hubs across the country
  • meeting capacity challenges - prospects and priorities following the PM’s announcement of A&E facilities funding
  • the Naylor review - examining developments since Sir Robert’s recommendations on disposal of surplus NHS land, development of strategic estate plans, and work with local integrated care systems
  • technology - implementation and modernisation in the NHS estate, its role in estate management and priorities for contributing improvements across the NHS estate, including in care:
    • digital and remote care - looking at how this has been developed, enabled and rolled out through the pandemic
    • online records - progress in digitising patient data and improving information systems, remaining technical challenges and engagement with staff and patients
    • improving health outcomes - priorities for identifying need and supporting integrated care
    • overcoming logistical and financial challenges and sharing best practice
  • efficiency improvements - looking at options, strategies, challenges and best practice in areas including:
    • spatial - effective use of NHS land, the role of multi-function spaces, and designing infrastructure that improves space utilisation
    • strategic - planning, project management, integration of innovation in technology and organisational processes
    • services - improving accessibility and enabling more integrated models of care

Policy officials attending

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stake holders.

Overall, we expect speakers and attendees to be a senior and informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government and regulatory officials involved in this area of policy, as well as from representatives from the NHS, executive agencies including clinical staff and directors of estates and facilities, regulators, the independent and third sectors, patient groups, architecture and development companies, law firms, consultancies, and others affected by the issues discussed, academics, think tanks, together with reporters from the national and specialist media.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Keynote Speakers

John Westwood

Director of Asset Management, NHS Property Services

Dr Sue O’Connell

Chief Executive, Community Health Partnerships

Paul Graham

Utilities, Waste & Sustainability Manager, Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust


Karin Smyth MP


Tony Wells

Managing Director, Merit

Ellen Vernon

Programme Director, One Public Estate, North Devon District Council

Alex Solk

Partner, Sheppard Robson