Governance of NHS endowment funds: review report

An independent review, chaired by Julie Hutchison LLB TEP WS, to consider and provide recommendations on changes that could be enacted to strengthen governance arrangements for NHS endowment funds.

Chapter 6: Timeline and Transition

6.1 A sample timeline is set out in Appendix 4.

6.2 It is noted that the accounting period for all NHS-linked charities commences on 1st April each year. With that in mind, it may be helpful for a future Implementation Date to fall on 1st April, to match the preparation of accounts for the new accounting period.

6.3 To successfully deliver the recommendations in this Review, there will be a significant volume of work involved, which falls into three broad phases:

  • a preparation phase, which has a focus on recruitment for the new Chairs and trustees
  • a transition phase, which enables handover and knowledge-sharing to take place between the outgoing and incoming Chairs and trustees
  • a post-implementation date phase, where the new Charity Liaison Groups are established and various contractual and operational matters are finalised by each NHS-linked charity.

6.4 The illustrative preparation phase in Appendix 4 stretches to a fifteen month period, with a focus on recruitment.

6.5 The transition phase in Appendix 4 is intended to be a minimum of three months after the preparation phase, to enable effective handover and knowledge-sharing between the outgoing and incoming Chairs and trustees. Depending on when this actually falls, it may be much longer than three months, ending with the implementation date on 1st April (which may be 1st April in the next again year).

6.6 Throughout this report, the use of a national shared forum has been signposted as a proposed means of co-ordinating work in preparation for the governance and operational changes ahead for the NHS-linked charities. This will enable, for example, any template documents to be prepared once and shared across all sixteen NHS-linked charities for local adaptation. The Chairs-elect might play a particular role within this national shared forum. Bringing together the potential areas for consideration by the national shared forum, the following is a non-exhaustive list:

  • a Trustee Recruitment Guide
  • Best practice relating to induction training for trustees
  • Code of Conduct
  • Various contractual template documents
  • Charity Liaison Group terms of reference
  • Data protection matters
  • Standing Orders


A suitable preparation and transition period for the implementation of these recommendations should be adopted, to enable practical arrangements to be made in advance of the implementation date on which many of the above changes would go live.

It is recommended that a date of 1st April is considered as a future implementation date, to match the start of the accounting period of the NHS-linked charities.

It is recognised that significant further work will be required by the Health Boards and NHS-linked charities to plan effectively for both the governance and operational changes recommended in this report. We recommend the use of a shared forum as a means of co-ordinating various aspects of the preparations and post-implementation date work.



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