Emergency Planning

The NHS needs to be able to plan for, and respond to, a wide range of incidents and emergencies that could impact on health or patient care.

These could be anything from extreme weather conditions, to an outbreak of an infectious disease, or a major transport accident.

The Civil Contingencies Act 2004 requires NHS organisations and providers of NHS funded care to show that they can deal with such incidents while maintaining services to patients.

This programme of work is referred to in the health community as emergency preparedness, resilience and response (EPRR).

New arrangements for local health EPRR came into effect on 1 April 2013 as a result of the Health and Social Care Act 2012.  All the latest information about these arrangements, together with key documentation, is provided on the NHS England website.

Further details are included in the Major incident plan.

The current version is 1.19 (January 2021). It is a live document which is updated as required after national or local changes, or to take account of learning from major incidents or exercises.

EPRR Assurance

The NHS England Core Standards for EPRR are the minimum standards which NHS organisations and providers of NHS funded care must meet.  An annual assurance process is conducted and the results are reported to the Trust Board and to the Local Health Resilience Partnerships in Cheshire, Merseyside and Greater Manchester.

In 2019-20, following self assessment against the 54 EPRR core standards relevant to community providers,  52 were assessed as green (fully compliant with core standard) and 2 as amber (Not compliant with core standard. However, the organisation’s EPRR work programme demonstrates sufficient evidence of progress and an action plan to achieve full compliance within the next 12 months).  The Trust therefore declared substantial compliance and this was reported to the Board at its meeting on 17 October 2019.

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, a shortened assurance process for 2020-21 was carried out and the Trust declared substantial compliance again.

For further information about the Trust’s responsibilities in a major incident, please contact us at bchft.enquiries@nhs.net.