NHSCFA Board meeting 5th February 2021

Minutes of NHSCFA Board meeting - FCG-BOA-MIN - Meeting – 05.02.21

Date: 5th February 2021

Meeting time: 11:00 – 13:00

Meeting title: NHSCFA Board Meeting


  • (TT)Tom Taylor (Chairperson)
  • (MS) Martin Spencer (Non-Executive Director)
  • (JS) Jayne Scott (Non-Executive Director)
  • (SF) Susan Frith (Chief Executive, NHSCFA)
  • (MJB) Matthew Jordan-Boyd (Director of Finance &Corporate Governance, NHSCFA)
  • (TM) Tricia Morrison (Director of Performance & Improvement NHSCFA)


  • (JR) Jane Robinson (Policy Manager, DHSC AFU)
  • (AS) Ann Sturgess (Corporate Governance Manager and Board Secretary, NHSCFA)
  • (RMW) Reg Madden-Waite (Senior Governance & Assurance Officer, NHSCFA) Note Taker


  • (PW) Peter Watson PEG

Apologies received:



TT welcomed all to the NHSCFA Board meeting, noting that this was JR’s first Board meeting. TT confirmed the agenda in respect of this meeting was reduced as previously agreed.


No apologies were received.

Declarations of interest

No new declarations of interest were made.

Minutes of Board Meeting 13.01.21

The Board agreed the minutes as a true record.

Action log

The Board reviewed the action log and updated it accordingly.

Q3 Performance update - Paper 1

TM presented paper 1 and brought out the following points, the report:

  • reflected the revised financial targets for 2020/2021
  • reviewed the main projects and included a section on COVID related work
  • demonstrated organisational resilience in the achievements it described
  • featured several positive points in respect of current and forecast trajectories, progress with CLUE, encouraging staff survey results and engagement with the sector
  • described difficulties in pursuing data gathering and analysis in pharmacy, general practitioner and help with healthcare costs, (HWHC), fraud

TT complemented TM on the report and asked that she passed on the Board’s recognition of the achievements described in the report. All those present indicated the report was well set out, thorough and clear. JS remarked that some areas, which were said to be on target were still rated as amber, whereas others, seemingly in a similar situation, were rated green. TM said that classification was currently down to individual owners, but that work was underway to achieve greater consistency. JS suggested that identifying this discussion to those owners may focus the owners and support the rationale for implementing this change.

There was a discussion as to whether the NHS Resolution (NHSR), figures, which it was agreed was a “one off”, might have skewed the results given that it was unlikely to be repeated during the period covered by the 3-year strategy. TM said that other areas which have not yet delivered will deliver in years 2 and 3. SF clarified that whilst in terms of quantity the NHSR figure was unexpectedly high there was nothing to say that NHSR would not deliver future, albeit lower amounts. SF added that whilst HWHC was not delivered this year it was anticipated that it will in future.

The Board noted the positive staff survey results previously discussed at REMCO. JS observed that other organisations had seen a similar “bounce” in staff survey results and increased job satisfaction recently. TM said that underlying trends were being examined.

MS asked whether the problems relating to data access were temporary and what actions were being taken to address this issue. TM confirmed that lessons were learned in respect of ways and means of approaching data gathering and analysis and that new approaches were being formulated as part of the Data Quality Strategy. TM offered to provide a further detail in relation to our approach to data collection and ensuring data quality to the Board at a future meeting which the Board accepted.

AP 113 TM to arrange for the Analytical Intelligence Lead David Dixon to present on data collection & data quality to a future Board meeting.

MS asked whether information could be extended to demonstrate progress across the three-year strategy period rather than just for 2020/2021 citing an existing graph in paper 1 as a useful format for mapping this information across. TM confirmed this would be provided as part of the year-end report. TT said it would be useful to include it as part of the future 2021/2022 planning cycle and performance reports.

AP 114 TM to provide the 2020/2021 performance data mapped against the three-year strategy and add this into future Integrated Planning Programme and Performance reports for the Board.

Returning to the staff survey results TM said that Business Support were currently examining the results to identify trends and patterns in responses.

On the subject of income generation MS highlighted that there were organisations, including the SFO and Companies House who were seeking services which the NHSCFA might be able to provide, and offered to open conversations on the subject if required. MJB acknowledge the support and confirmed all options were being considered. The restrictions that prohibit investment to solely generate income were noted by the Board.

JR said that the methodology used to arrive at the NHSR figures had been approved by the Cabinet Office and went on to confirm that they also were aware of the importance of data sharing. SF confirmed that NHSCFA were contributing to the formation of a “data alliance partnership” involving other ALBs.

JR asked whether reluctance to nominate ‘fraud champions’ in some organisations was related to the type of organisation or other reasons. TM confirmed those organisations where nominations had not been made would be identified. SF highlighted that COVID was almost certainly a factor, and confirmed that the new standards would also support he requirements.

2021-22 Integrated Business Planning progress update - Paper 2

TM introduced paper 2 which was a continuation of a paper presented to the Board last month. Development had been through consultation with a wide range of NHSCFA people as well as the continued Performance and Assurance Panels and the planning process aplied to organisation and business unit plans.

TM pointed out that the plan was set out based on NHSCFA having its full establishment. It was still under development and the revised plan would go to the Board and DH in April and would include a summary of achievements in 20/21.

MS complemented TM on the clarity of the report and that the format lent itself to making SMART operational objectives which could be mapped against the three-year strategy. MS highlighted the need to identify priorities if the NHSCFA did not achieve its full establishment. TM confirmed prioritisation of objectives was taking place alongside identification of clear performance measures.

The Board noted that Foresight Consulting had been approached to undertake a review of “activity-based costing” to determine activity costs to support calculation of return on investment in addition to other impacts. JS supported the approach to this and confirmed the ARAC would support the work on this is in the future as appropriate, for example through a deep dive.

The Board noted the £55m “disruption activity” was yet to be fully mapped out. TM offered to produce a paper on this for a future Board meeting.

AP 115 TM to produce a paper on NHSCFA Disruption Activity for the Board

JS remarked that the target of £5M for LCFS activity seemed unambitious, particularly as represented on the chart, which otherwise was agreed to be an excellent and clear representation. TM said that this figure is based on our current estimation but did not take into account engagement work already commenced and planned for the next year. TM felt that further improvements would be made if the LCFS were to become more involved in our planning process.

Review of forward planner - Paper 3

There were no changes made to the current forward planner

Review of effectiveness of meeting

It was agreed that the meeting had been conducted effectively and that the papers had been fully and that the discussion had been productive thanks in part to the papers being clear and comprehensive.

PW agreed that from the PEG perspective as well as an individual he had learnt a lot from the meeting particularly in respect of NHSCFA’s position in the health “eco system”. He said this would be reflected in his report back. TT remarked that the Board was able to exercise influence on behalf of the NHSCFA and felt that staff should be made aware of this.

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