Glanso UK Ltd, founded in May 2019 in Bristol, organises and carries out surgical procedures for hospital trusts. The company employs a team of staff, generally NHS staff on their rest days, to carry out surgery in operating theatres that are unused at the weekend.
Hospital trusts are using the company to reduce waiting lists for procedures, such as endoscopy. At present the company mainly works in the Bristol and Devon area, but has recently opened for business in Nottinghamshire.
In 2013, two consultant anaesthetists based in the Bristol area, Dr Matt Molyneux and Dr Neil Rasburn, set-up Global Anaesthetic Solutions Ltd to provide training in anaesthesia safety and good practice. According to the Glasno website, this business is still carried out:
"We are a team of four consultant anaesthetists with expertise in patient safety and team training. We have delivered workshops and on-site simulation training to over 1000 healthcare professionals with excellent feedback. The CQC have praised our approach to effective WHO and NatSSIP/LocSSIP delivery in our NHS hospitals and we have had several visiting teams to learn from our success."
In 2017, Dr Molyneux and Dr Rasburn, set-up Glasno Holdings Ltd, followed in May 2019 by Glasno UK ltd. The business model for Glasno UK Ltd is as follows: a hospital trust can in-source the company to carry out surgical procedures in its theatres at times when the theatre is not being used - the weekend. Glasno supplies all the staff - theatre nurses, anaesthetists and surgeons - and is paid for its work. The staff, who are generally NHS staff, are paid for the job, rather than an hourly rate. The staff are working on their rest days. The company's website notes:
"Our business model is simple: everyone in the surgical team (surgeon, anaesthetist, ODP, scrub nurse, runner, recovery nurse, porter) is rewarded financially for safe and efficient care. Rather than a simple hourly rate, all members of the team are paid according to the high quality work that has been done. Central to this is putting the patient at the heart of everything we do."
According to the company website Glasno is seeking staff to sign-up for work in the following hospitals: University Hospitals Bristol, North Bristol, Gloucestershire, Barnstaple, and Exeter, plus Sherwood Hospital Trust in Nottinghamshire.
Documents filed on Companies House seem to indicate that the expansion to Nottinghamshire has been financed by investment from the company Midland Innovation Ltd, whose sole director is Dr Srikant Narra. Midland Innovation Ltd was founded in November 2019 and which in November 2020 became owner of less than 50% but more than 25% of Glasno UK Ltd.
It is difficult to get accurate information on the amount of work and any contracts Glasno UK Ltd has with the hospital trusts. There is no mention of contracts between the trusts and the company on the Contractfinder or ted databases of public contracts. There are few mentions of the company on the hospital trust websites
Glasno UK Ltd's latest Total Exemption Full Accounts on Companies House are for the period March 2021 to 31 March 2022. The company states that it has decided not to file a profit and loss account as it is allowed to do under the Companies Act 2006.
According to the accounts the company employed 194 staff over this period of time.
It is the same situation for Glasno Holdings Ltd, with no profit and loss accounts. This company employed just the two directors, Dr Molyneux and Dr Rasburn, over the period 12 month period to 31 March 2022.
A Freedom of Information request to University Hospitals Bristol and Weston available online revealed, however, that Glasno UK Ltd was paid £475,570.5 in 2018/19 and £1,031,552.39 in 2019/20.
The contracts between Glanso UK Ltd and hospital trusts are referred to in several board papers, but can not be found on the Contractfinder or Ted database of public contracts. As a result it is safe to assume that no open public tender process was carried out prior to giving work to the company. An examination of references in board papers has shown the company to be involved in endoscopy (in Gloucestershire) and orthopaedic surgery (in Devon).
References to Glanso in board papers include notes such as the following on the minutes of a May 2019 North Devon Healthcare Trust meeting:
"Question 4 – Dr McElderry. “How are Glanso fulfilling care that NDDH cannot provide, which area would this be in and is this a short-term measure?
Response – Pete Adey. Glanso is a mechanism being used for long waiting patients, predominantly in orthopaedics. It enables orthopaedic surgeon to undertake lists at weekends. It is a way of executing the lists using an in-sourcing company. The procedures are carried out by Trust surgeons in theatres at NDDH, but involves a different payment mechanism."