A message from Shropdoc CEO Daniel Robinson

Within this blog, I share my insights from across Shropdoc with a view to highlighting the great work of our staff as well as updates on key developments at the organisation and across the local health economy.


Shropdoc Charitable Work – Helping our Communities 

I am extremely proud to be part of a team that is really making a difference to the lives of those in need across our communities. 

As a not-for-profit health and care provider, Shropdoc embraces its corporate social responsibility, and we are continuously looking at ways in which we can have a positive and lasting impact within our communities - forming this approach as an integral part of our company’s ethos and values. 

So far in the first half of 2022, we have forged charitable partnerships with Severn Hospice and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.  I am delighted to announce that through participation in events such as the Shrewsbury Dragon Boat Race, Shropdoc cake sales and coffee mornings we have passionately raised funds in the region of £1,600 for these fantastic causes; well done everybody - a great result. 


Discretionary Payment October 2022

The increase in the cost of living is on everyone’s minds; it has also been part of many recent conversations among the leadership team because we know that many colleagues are experiencing additional pressure on their finances.

As the rising cost of living continues to impact our people and our customers, we've been assessing the evolving position for inflation and considering how we can support our team even further.

I was pleased to announce earlier this month that we'll be making a discretionary payment of £400 to all Shropdoc staff. This payment reflects our concern for the challenges being faced by everyone in our business and although this will not fully mitigate the pressures felt, we hope it will go some way towards helping them in the coming months. 


Organisational Performance 

Advanced Health & Care Solutions – Adastra System Outage August 2022

The three months since my last message include a National cyber-attack on the software supplier to the NHS, Advanced Health and Care Solutions which critically impacted the provision of Health and Care services across the United Kingdom. This event marked the beginning of an extraordinary and sustained response from our staff and GP Members. 

As a result of the attack early on 4th August, we experienced a major systems outage with our core clinical operating platform, Adastra, affecting service provision across England and Wales. 

Shropdoc successfully mobilised and maintained business continuity plans across affected services for a period of six weeks providing uninterrupted services to our patients, customers and communities throughout a challenging period. Once again, I would like to highlight the exceptional dedication, agility and responsiveness of our people over the course of this major disruption. 


Organisational Development 

Changes on the Board of Directors


Our Board of Directors is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Aaron Dean as our new GP Non-Executive Director from 1st November 2022. We welcome Dr Dean to the team and very much look forward to working together in the future. 

Dr Dean graduated from the University of Leicester in 2015 and qualified as a GP in 2020.  He is now a partner at Newtown Medical Practice and has a special interest in minor surgery. He has been a GP member of Shropdoc for two years and enjoys the variety that this role brings. In his spare time, Dr Dean likes to travel, go to the gym, and go on long walks with his two golden retrievers.

Shropdoc Corporate Induction Days

It really has been fantastic to welcome so many new members of staff to the Organisation over the last few months. 

Taking on new employees is an exciting time for us and for our new team members. Our employees are our most important asset, and we really want to get their induction right from day one. We have worked hard to refresh and revamp our employee induction, and it was great to be part of the most recent event held at the Trinity Church in Shrewsbury. 

Our teams developed a packed agenda for our new starters on the day with guest speakers from all departments and some interactive and engaging activities introducing Our Company, Our Culture and the way we work. Feedback has been excellent, and we have some great ideas for further enhancing the programme moving forward. 

Salaried GP Recruitment 

As we look to add greater resilience to our workforce models and better support our existing GP Members, Clinical and operational teams we have been working hard to develop new recruitment strategies to grow our GP workforce. 

In my previous blog, I outlined our application bid for a sponsorship licence which would enable us to recruit GPs in the UK requiring visa sponsorship or potentially directly from overseas. 

I am pleased to report that Shropdoc’s application was successful and we now hold a full sponsorship licence. We are planning to support GPs requiring visa sponsorship on certification for completion of training (CCT) and have events planned early in February 2023 where we hope to attract a number of potential candidates to employment at Shropdoc. 

Alongside the Sponsorship programme, we have live recruitment campaigns for salaried GP roles at Shropdoc; this campaign is likely to be rolling into the new year.


Health & Wellbeing 

At Shropdoc we truly value and understand the importance of employee wellbeing. 

Through the introduction of education and wellness programmes, we aim to create a healthier and more inclusive culture, a better work-life balance for all and improve levels of morale and engagement amongst our teams.

By taking a holistic approach to health and wellbeing at Shropdoc our aim is for our workforce to feel better supported and ultimately contribute towards creating a happier working environment.

Shropdoc Shufflers

Our wellbeing highlights include the Shropdoc Shuffers Cader Idris climb - there is nothing quite like a walk with friends and colleagues where you can catch up, de-stress and get the exercise your body needs to thrive. 

The Shropdoc Shufflers group was established in 2019 as Shropdoc’s walking group and a popular event in our social calendar. Following restrictions placed on the group over the COVID-19 Pandemic, I am delighted to see how the group has taken off again most recently taking on Cader Idris, a mountain in the county of Meirionnydd, Wales, which lies at the southern end of Snowdonia National Park.

Paycare Benefit to all Shropdoc Employees

All employees are welcome to join the company’s Health and Wellbeing Service ‘Paycare’. Shropdoc pays for level 1 cover for all employees, however, employees can choose to increase their subscription with Paycare and add family members to their plan. 

Paycare, a not-for-profit organisation, offers a wide range of cover that you can access at any time including a virtual GP service, confidential helplines, payment for health assessments and a wide range of discounts on everyday purchases.


Investments in our Infrastructure 

Information Management Technology (IM&T) 

Our Digital Strategy is a key enabling component of our Organisational Strategy, bold and dynamic in outlining our ambitions for the future. We are committed to creating a culture that embraces digital technology.

Outsourced Network Management 

Network management is one of the most important components when mapping our organisation’s IT infrastructure. 

Managed services relate to outsourcing the responsibility for supporting, and anticipating the need for, a range of processes and functions to improve operations and drive greater productivity and efficiency across the business.

As our business and the technological world around us rapidly changes and becomes increasingly more complex we must ensure that we invest to adapt and respond to meet the needs of our patients, customers and of course our people. 

We have recently completed a robust procurement process in order to identify and contract an external specialist Managed Service Provider (MSP). 

Ultimately this solution will become an extension of our in-house IT team establishing an effective partnership that will enable our team to better focus on daily operations and strategic objectives. 

Outsourcing our network management provides several benefits, such as added data security, 24/7 operational coverage, scalability, increased productivity, minimal downtime, and more.

Microsoft Office 365 Implementation 

The pace and scale of digital transformation in the last 12 months at Shropdoc has been impressive and technology is now a golden thread through the way our services are working together, to provide great patient care. 

Our migration to Office 365 is the latest example of our commitment to providing a great place to work and, through the use of technology, delivering quality, safe and innovative patient care. 

The new system has many benefits including allowing staff to work anywhere there is an internet connection, giving staff a forum to easily discuss a joint project; reducing calls and emails back and forth, and the new system will in time reduce our capital spend and energy costs.


Working towards a better future 

Key Stakeholder Engagement – Powys & Shropshire Health & Care Systems

I wish to provide an update on what I, members of the Board and the Executive Team have been up to in relation to stakeholder engagement across the wider Health and Care sector over the last few months. 

Shropshire Telford and Wrekin’s (STW) Integrated Care System (ICS) formally established itself with effect from 1st July 2022. The change has bought many new senior leaders into our system with the responsibility to transform health and care across STW. 

We have been extremely busy meeting with key partners across STW with a view to ensuring that Shropdoc’s valued expertise and place as a key provider continue to play a critical role in contributing to plans to shape and transform services for the future. 

With scalable change on the horizon, we are working hard to establish new relationships at all levels within the ICS and develop a clear understanding of the system. I am pleased to feed back to everybody that the clear message from across the system is a shared value of Shropdoc, our corporate memory spanning over 25 years and as a trusted, highly regarded provider of quality Health and Care Services. 

A key strategic theme for systems in both Powys and Shropshire is ‘transforming in Partnership’. 

Shropdoc has long-standing, trusted and respected relationships with the NHS on both sides of the border. Our continued emphasis at Shropdoc will be to strengthen and build further on many years of success, in Partnership to help achieve future objectives.


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