Case Study | Invigorating Staff and Transforming Culture

Virginia Mason Institute


Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (SASH)


SASH sought to learn from Virginia Mason Institute how to create a robust management system for staff engagement and transformation with a goal of becoming one of the country’s safest hospitals.


  • Coaching and mentorship through process of developing a unified management system called SASH+, incorporating the focus on the patient at the top and shared vision, focus areas, goals and a single improvement methodology
  • Coaching and training provided to start the process of embedding the new management system throughout the organization. Over 200 team members participated in our six-month program learning improvement tools and techniques who then took them back to their work area and engaged frontline staff in identifying opportunities and making improvements


The overall impact has been the creation of a unified improvement culture focused on the patient that leverages one common improvement language for the trust, creating improvements in quality, service, delivery, and morale that link directly back to their safety priorities and shared vision for the community. More specifically, this work has resulted in the following:

  • Thanks to factors including this work, SASH has been rated ‘outstanding’, the highest possible rating, by the Care Quality Commission
  • Over the program term, SASH saw reduced sickness absence performance by 0.5% and retention figures improved by 3% amounting to a savings of more than £1 million
  • All improvement work rolls up to shared goals and occurs within the parameters of the aligned, overarching organizational strategy
  • Staff have protected time for training and learning, working on improvements, and encouraging the spread of process improvement throughout the organization
  • A shared focus on the patient and an improved patient experience
  • Improvements that incorporate frontline staff ideas and bring joy back to their work experiences

Optimizing technology at SASH

Learn how SASH+ is helping teams unlock technological efficiency by giving staff and patients opportunities to test and influence design.

Read the full story

Improving access while re-engaging staff at SASH

Learn how a team at SASH used iterative testing and innovation to redesign patient flow and drastically improve access and reduce backlogs.

Read the full story

How We Help

Whether its complex system transformation or smaller-scale training and coaching, we’re here to partner with you to meet your needs and drive impact for your teams and patients. Learn more about how we help:

Read More

Originally published February 23, 2022, updated March 24, 2022

Similar resources

Stay connected

Sign up for our monthly emails to stay up to date with our latest news, resources, case studies, events and more.

Your information will not be shared. Learn more about our privacy policy here.