Boards do appear to make a difference according to recent research involving NHS foundation trusts

Research carried out by Stuart Emslie, editor, Healthcare Governance Review, has found a clear association between board and organisational performance in NHS foundation trusts. The research involved 21 foundation trust boards of directors and compared the effectiveness of the board, as measured using a robust validated tool developed for non-profit boards, including hospital boards, in the USA, and various measures of financial and non-financial organisational performance.

The research found a strong and highly statistically significant association between board performance and both financial performance and key performance metrics relating to staff satisfaction. Unfortunately, no association was found between board performance and a range of clinically oriented performance indicators, including the Healthcare Commission’s quality ratings.

The research was carried out to produce a dissertation in partial fulfilment of the degree of Master of Science by Research in Corporate Governance and Ethics at Birkbeck, University of London. A copy of the dissertation can be freely downloaded here.

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