Explore: Healthcare

Head of Patient Liaison
Addenbrookes Hospital

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Lee B

00:00:01 My name’s Lee B and my job title is Head of Patient Liaison here at Addenbrookes. We deal with any complaint about the services that are provided by Addenbrookes. We deal with everything from – couldn’t park the car to more serious clinical complaints, where the outcome of surgery or of a long stay might not be what the patient or family expected. So many people say I could never do you job, how do you end up doing your job? And I think it is very emotionally demanding but it’s also very rewarding as well, we see the people that have had a poor experience, or things haven’t gone as they’d expected it, and we have got an opportunity that they go away with a different feeling about Addenbrookes. And that’s the role that we have and the opportunity that we’re given with what we do.

00:00:41 I suppose I wanted to be a pop star, I guess. I played around with song writing, and then I would go and meet with people that already had publishing deals. I always thought music would somehow be a part of what I would do professionally. It hasn’t turned out that way but it’s still as big a part of my life, personally, just it’s not involved in a professional level.

00:02:30 I was quite academic, I liked school, but at the same time wasn’t exactly in with the swotty set, I suppose that you would say. I was slightly out of the loop in that I wasn’t particularly sporty so that alienated me a bit, but I enjoyed school. From a personal point of view A-Levels, I found them academically quite challenging. I picked three essay based subjects which was perhaps for me not the best decision to have made, so I would certainly have done that differently. I managed to keep focusing on wanting to pass, I put myself in the best position that I could to do that and then decided it was time to take a break, and just really didn’t feel ready to go off to University. So I thought I would take the opportunity to go off and travel. Began thinking about what I wanted to do next, if you like, away from home and I came back very keen to do a degree and get back into education. So for me the travelling and not doing anything led to me wanting to do something, and certainly something creative again. Media Performance was the degree title, but I got to do script writing and journalism, did some radio production. Whilst at University, out of term time, I came back and worked here doing admin work basically anywhere in the hospital, so it was from there that I really got the feel for the place, and thought this could be me in the longer term, but I just didn’t know what the role would be that would suit me. When I finished University I worked for the BBC for a little while locally, worked for a media training company, but just didn’t find it terribly fulfilling, I guess it wasn’t busy enough for me. I couldn’t quite see where it was going to take me. I came to the hospital the first time in December 2001, and worked here for around two years. And then went off to be the Complaints Manager at a District General hospital in Bury St Edmunds, before coming back into this role two and a half years ago. Addenbrookes is like a small town in terms of the feel, it has a great buzz to it, and going to a District General was a bit of a culture shock in terms of everything was a smaller scale. It had lots of positives in terms of things were perhaps more achievable working within a smaller scale, but I did in the longer term miss the buzz of the place.

00:02:59 I could see myself ending up working at the Department of Health, because I think it’s helpful to see things from the other side. So I’ve worked in this area enough now to know how I think things should look from a strategic point of view. I could see myself being more strategic in trying to use the influence and experience that I have to shape things for people doing my job elsewhere. I would really like to write a script, I’d like to finish a script, irrespective of what happens to it. I still have lots of – I think once you’re a creative person from any stage in your life that never goes away, no matter what you do it’s still there bubbling away, and you have ideas that keep coming through, it’s just that you don’t always do anything with them, or record them or write them down. So the creative juices are still flowing.


Head of Patient Liaison at Addenbrookes Lee B, says of his role “I think it is very emotionally demanding but it’s also rewarding as well, we see the people that have had a poor experience, or things haven’t gone as they’d expected, and we have the opportunity that they go away with a different feeling.”

More information about Health services and public health managers and directors

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

31%  male 
69%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Managers and directors in this unit group plan, organise, direct and co-ordinate the resources and activities of health care providers and purchasers at both district and unit levels.
Entrants require a degree or equivalent qualification, a professional qualification and/or relevant experience. Off- and on-the-job training is provided through management training schemes. The nature of schemes varies between regions and occupational areas.
  • Implements policies of the board, ensures statutory procedures are followed, with particular emphasis on patient safety and the management of risk;
  • Liaises with health care professionals to determine short and long-term needs and how to meet these objectives within budgetary constraints;
  • Oversees the day-to-day management of the unit or service and provides leadership to staff;
  • Uses statistical information to monitor performance and assist with planning;
  • Negotiates and manages contracts with providers and purchasers of health care services;
  • Manages staff, including recruitment, appraisal and development;
  • Monitors and reports upon the effectiveness of services with a view to improving the efficiency of health care provision;
  • Coordinates the promotion of public health and wellbeing in the actions and policies of public agencies and their social partners;
  • Monitors and reports upon the state of public health and wellbeing.
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