Slavery and human trafficking statement is made pursuant to Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 'Transparency in Supply Chains'

About the Trust

Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust (the Trust) came into force as a legal entity on 1 November 1993. Its headquarters are at Darent Valley Hospital in Dartford, Kent.

In addition, the Trust also provides services at Queen Mary’s Hospital, Sidcup and Erith and District Hospital, Gravesham Community Hospital in Gravesend as well as a number of community locations across our population. The Trust offers a comprehensive range of acute services, with a bed-base of c500, to around 400,000 people in North Kent and South East London.

Darent Valley Hospital (DVH) opened in September 2000 and the hospital building is run as part of a Private Finance Initiative (PFI).  This means the building is owned by a private sector company, The Hospital Company (Dartford) Limited, and the Trust leases the building.  Many non-clinical services, such as portering, domestic cleaning, security and facilities maintenance, are provided by Medirest who became the soft facilities provider during 2021.   DVH has inpatient beds and specialties that include the following but not limited to:

  • day-care surgery
  • general surgery
  • trauma and orthopaedics
  • cardiology
  • maternity
  • paediatrics
  • general medicine

The services provided by the Trust at Queen Mary’s Hospital (QMH) include elective day surgery and outpatient services in general surgery, gynaecology and paediatrics, diagnostic and therapies. Erith and District Hospital provides X-ray services only.  Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust is responsible for the buildings at Queen Mary’s and Erith hospitals and the Trust works with it and many other organisations both within the NHS and outside of it.

Slavery and human trafficking statement

Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust’s slavery and human trafficking statement is made pursuant to Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 'Transparency in Supply Chains' and was originally approved by the Audit Committee and Trust Board in December 2018. This statement (dated April 2022) was approved by the Audit Committee at its April 2022 meeting.  This statement relates to the financial year 2022-23 with the year ending 31 March 2023.

The Trust does not permit, condone or otherwise accept any form of slavery and/or human trafficking (as defined by the Modern Slavery Act 2015) either by its employees, subcontractors, contractors, agents, partners or any other organisation, entity, body, business or individual that the Trust engages or does business with.  The Trust supply chain entails the purchasing of goods and services that support the operation of our core business of healthcare.  Consumables purchased include medical supplies and equipment, office supplies, marketing materials, ICT equipment and estate and facilities services such as cleaning, waste management, office fixtures and fittings, security services and uniforms. Operating with integrity governs our approach and therefore our aspiration to be recognised by our stakeholders as an organisation which is a responsible corporate citizen in all our relationships. We are an equal opportunities employer and have held Investors in People' status for more than 10 years with the last assessment in January 2023 being awarded the Silver standard.

The Trust’s recruitment and employment procedures include appropriate pre-employment screening of all staff to determine right to work in the UK.  There is an expectation that all employees conduct business with honesty and integrity and there is a zero tolerance approach to bribery and corruption.

Procurement within the Trust was delivered by an in-house function.  Reviews and updates to any policies and procedures that relate to the Trust’s corporate responsibility for slavery and human trafficking are included in any purchasing guidelines.   There are expectations of suppliers in a number of areas including diversity, ethical, social, environment, health and safety issues and revisions have been made to provide further guidance on slavery and other human rights issues. 

The Trust has not been informed of any incidents of slavery or human trafficking during the year but will investigate any allegations should they arise and in the event of a slavery or human trafficking incident occurring or an allegation being made, the matter will be reported and investigated using the Trust’s established processes to determine appropriate action.

The Trust uses its own networks locally and nationally to ensure it engages with other organisations to learn and to share best practice including NHS England, NHS Providers and other collaboration initiatives such as the Sustainability and Transformation footprints, Integrated Care Boards, Primary Care Networks and the healthcare alliance with Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust.

In conclusion, the Trust is committed to better understanding its supply chains and collaborating with stakeholders to improve transparency and address incidents of slavery or human trafficking identified.