Welcome to the October edition of our Healthcare roundup for our clients and contacts working in the NHS. In this month’s newsletter we’re featuring:

  • Associate Dylan Young talks about some of the common mistakes made by contracting authorities during the procurement process, and how to avoid them
  • A recap of our latest sector insights in case you missed them
  • What’s coming up – find out about the events we are hosting in the coming months.

What I'm talking to my clients about

Dylan Young, Associate

Dylan is an Associate in the Litigation Team who leads on contentious procurement work. Dylan qualified in New Zealand and has been with Capsticks for 10 years. He advises the firm’s public, health and social housing clients on contract disputes, procurement challenges and PFI and outsourcing arrangements.

Dylan acts for bidders concerned about procurement processes and for contracting authorities faced with challenges. Dylan and the wider procurement team have been involved in a number of procurement challenges in the High Court, many of which have been reported.

What I’m talking to clients about:

Where procurements go wrong and how to avoid making the same mistakes!

I am usually contacted by contracting authority clients when a challenge to their procurement process has already arisen. The objective is to extricate the client from the dispute as quickly and cost effectively as possible so that the client can mobilise its new service. However, we work closely with clients to help avoid mistakes that led to the challenge in the first place—this input up front can pay dividends in saving legal costs and delay at a later stage.

A recurrent issue I see is that contracting authorities are failing to complete adequate records of their decision-making process. This is usually because they are unaware of the requirements for record-keeping. This can have serious consequences for the client’s prospects of rebutting a challenge because, without an adequate record, the court will draw adverse inferences about the reasons for a decision.

I am therefore talking to my clients about the common mistakes I see around record-keeping and how to avoid them. I often provide training about this to procurement staff and evaluators which explains:

  • changes arising from recent case law
  • best practice
  • the strategies the client can deploy to defuse a challenge

Please do contact me or a member of the team if you have any concerns about a public contract you are procuring or bidding for. Further details on our training can be found here.

Events and conferences

We are constantly planning new events so visit ourevents page to see what's coming up.

Where to meet us

NHS Estates – Policy Updates
Leeds | 31 October
Winchester | 14 November
Birmingham | 19 November
London | 4 December

Despite the continued state of flux and transition in NHS estates policy, opportunities to make improvements across the NHS estate continue to arise. This series of seminars will therefore focus on key updates on current policies which directly affect the NHS estate including:

  • the Health Infrastructure Plan relating to capital investment in NHS infrastructure projects
  • the Homes for NHS Staff policy
  • the potential transfer of properties from NHS Property Services and Community Health Partnerships.

We are delighted to run this series of seminars in partnership with Archus, a company providing strategic advice on healthcare infrastructure, investment and development, who will presenting on best practice in producing and delivering business case approvals, a challenging area for many NHS organisations.

Representatives from NHSE/NHSI will also join the Leeds and Birmingham events to provide an update on Capital Strategy. Follow the links to register for Leeds, Winchester, Birmingham or London.

HFMA Estates & Facilities Forum
London | 7 November

Capsticks is sponsoring the HFMA Estates and Facilities Forum. The forum will consider ways that the NHS can continue to maximise estate productivity benefits, improve utilisation of clinical space, ensure build and maintenance is done sustainably and improve energy efficiency. View further information here.

Employment Law Updates
London | 13 November
Leeds | 18 November
Bridgwater | 26 November
Birmingham | 28 November

Capsticks invite you to join us for our upcoming employment law update. Our expert team of employment lawyers will talk you through all the latest employment law news, including a round up of case law and legislative developments, and will look ahead to what is on the horizon for 2020.

These seminars will offer you the opportunity to get up to speed with current employment law issues, get involved in discussions about topical issues and put questions to our expert legal team, and network with your peers and colleagues. Follow the links to register for London, Bridgwater or Birmingham.

NHS Property 2019
London | 27 November

Our real estate team will be exhibiting at this conference aimed at property specialists in healthcare and other public sector organisations. New trends in estates planning, as well as other current topics will be discussed at the event. View further information here.

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High Court refuses to prevent Trust from proceeding to a disciplinary hearing

Capsticks recently represented the Trust in Al-Obaidi v Frimley Health NHS Trust (“the Trust”). In this case, the High Court has today issued Judgment refusing a permanent injunction to prevent the Trust from continuing with disciplinary proceedings against Dr Al–Obaidi. Read more.

Safety and learning in maternity: NHS Resolution’s Early Notification scheme progress report

NHS Resolution has published a report on the first year of its Early Notification (EN) scheme for potential severe brain injury following term labour. The EN scheme has been running since 1 April 2017 and requires NHS Trusts in England to report within 30 days, for investigation, all births which meet the qualifying criteria. Read more.

New regulations and guidance on referring deaths to the coroner

On 1 October 2019 the Notification of Death Regulations 2019, which cover the reporting of deaths to a coroner in certain ‘prescribed circumstances, came into force. Read more.

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Our ambition is to include information that is relevant to you as professional working within the NHS. Let us know your feedback and suggestions for future features by emailing us at info@capsticks.com.