In a meeting yesterday no one could lay their hands on the actual wording that defines the role of the council of governors in an NHS foundation trust. For future convenience, I copied and pasted the relevant paragraphs into a short reference document.
This document covers only the “day-to-day” role of the council. Some other aspects of the council of governors’ role are things that happen only infrequently, like receiving the trust’s annual report (annually), appointing a new Chair of the trust (occasionally), and removing the Chair of the trust (probably never). The document does not cover these infrequent duties.
Download the document here:
Different people summarize and paraphrase what governors do in different ways. Here’s my version of what governors do, “day-to-day”, based on the references in the document:
- Hold non-executive directors to account for the performance of the board
- Evaluate the performance of executive and non-executive directors
- Evaluate the performance of the trust
- Represent the interests of all of the members
- Represent the public interest
And the council might reasonably decide to:
- Expose and challenge deficiencies in quality
To do all this, the council will:
- Hold meetings
- Obtain information from directors
- Obtain information from elsewhere
- Collaborate with the board and the chair
- Communicate with all of the members
- Communicate with other stakeholder organizations
- Communicate with the public
In the above, “communicate” means two-way communication and “all of the members” includes staff.