Speaking up (Whistleblowing)

The NCL ICB is a public body that is responsible for commissioning health care services for the people of the London Boroughs of Barnet, Camden, Enfield, Haringey and Islington. As such it is also the steward of significant public funds.

It is important that the NCL ICB and those working for it uphold the highest standards of conduct and behaviour, promote a culture of openness, transparency and safety and support a safe working environment. This helps to ensure:

  • the NCL ICB exercises its duties and responsibilities effectively
  • appropriate use and stewardship of public funds
  • benefits to patients and residents are maximised
  • public trust and confidence is maintained.

Whilst it is expected that acts of wrongdoing are rare, the ability to speak up acts as a key safeguard and deterrent against wrongdoing. It helps to protect the NCL ICB, patients, staff, stakeholders and the wider NHS.

It is important that people are able to speak up where there is wrongdoing and feel supported by the NCL ICB in doing so. It is also important that those who speak up are protected where their concerns are genuine and have been raised in line with the NCL ICB’s Whistleblowing Policy. Where this is the case, the NCL ICB is committed to ensuring that those speaking up are supported and do not suffer from any unlawful detriment to their employment.

How do I speak up?

The NCL ICB has a number of ways in which you can speak up about wrongdoing.

You can speak with your line manager in the first instance if you feel comfortable doing so. However, if you do not or feel that you cannot you may raise it with our Freedom To Speak Up Guardian or our Speak Up Ambassadors. If your concern relates to fraud you may also speak with our Local Counter Fraud Specialists.

Freedom to speak up Guardians

The NCL ICB has two freedom to speak up Guardians. They act as an independent source of advice to staff on speaking up. The Guardians have access to anyone in the organisation (including the Chief Executive Officer) and, where necessary, outside of the organisation. Staff can contact the Guardians at any stage. The Guardians also have a wider role to help protect patient safety and the quality of care, improve the experience of workers and improve learning and improvement by ensuring that workers are supported in speaking up, barriers to speaking up are addressed, a positive culture of speaking up is fostered and issues raised are used as opportunities for learning and improvement.

The contact details of the NCL ICB’s Guardians (both clinical and non-clinical) are below.

Speak up Ambassadors

The NCL ICB also has speak up Ambassadors. Our Ambassadors are staff volunteers who have been trained to be a point of contact for any NCL ICB worker who wishes to speak up or find out more information about the process. They can listen to your concerns, help guide you through the process, sign post you to the right place and/or people and provide impartial support. They work closely with the Guardians and can escalate concerns to them where appropriate.

The contact details for the NCL ICB’s Ambassadors are below.

All of the freedom to speak up Guardians and Ambassadors can be contacted by MS Teams.

Local counter fraud specialists

If you would like to speak up about actual or suspected fraud, you can also speak with our local counter fraud specialists. Their contact details are on the Counter Fraud page.

Zero tolerance statement

Our Chief Executive Officer, Frances O’Callaghan, has written a statement which sets out the NCL ICB’s zero tolerance approach to harassment, bullying and discrimination. In her statement, Frances fully supports and encourages anyone who is experiencing/has experienced, or has witnessed, any form of discrimination, harassment or bullying to come forward and tell us in order that they can receive support and advice on how to take forward any concern in accordance with the most appropriate policy; no act is considered too small to be addressed.