• ESG Commitments

The foundations of Riverdale Healthcare group were laid in dental practices with a positive approach to community and charity engagement. We are committed to build on the founding values and create a comprehensive, embedded and group wide approach to our Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) responsibilities.

We are in the first year of developing this multi-year strategy

Our ESG programme is headed by our CEO Emma Barnes. The programme is being developed, reviewed and implemented by the Senior Leadership Team and an external expert consultant.

Our ESG aspirations split into 4 main aims:

Governance

Our Aim: Be a sector leader in governance and transparency

High standards of corporate governance and integrity are essential not just to effective operation but to the fulfilment of our core mission. We aim to ensure our governance is in line with best practice.

Audits

Riverdale Healthcare Group is subject to an annual external audit conducted by our independent auditors, Hazlewoods. Consolidated audited statutory accounts are reviewed by Hazlewoods and filed at Companies House.

Integrity of Financial and Accounting Information

Our accounts are audited annually using a financial reporting framework that is applicable by law and United Kingdom Accounting Standards, including Financial Reporting Standard 102 ‘The Financial Reporting Standard applicable in the UK and Republic of Ireland’ (United Kingdom Generally Accepted Accounting Practice).

Accountability And Fraud Prevention

We operate an appropriate approval hierarchy for spend, with assets suitably safeguarded and reviewed. We have preventative controls in place including balance sheet reconciliations, debtor reviews, variance analysis, new supplier sign off, verification of bank accounts, with access to systems strictly controlled.

To prevent conflict of interest, all directors are required to disclose any related party transactions on an annual basis, and any such transactions are disclosed within our statutory accounts.

People Compliance

We require GDC registration and number confirmation from all employees as well as an up-to-date immunisation schedule with confirmation of the necessary vaccines. All practice employees are required to have a full DBS and indemnity is required for all self-employed contractors.

Decision-Making Processes

Our SLT meeting agenda templates include a question on Social & Environmental impact for any strategic decisions to ensure that they align with our ESG commitments. We also include a specialist ESG advisor at all strategic planning sessions or reviews.

Tax Governance

All tax compliance requirements are completed by the group, in conjunction with our tax advisers. We additionally have access to suitably competent external tax advisers for any matters that may arise.

Patient Complaints

Our patient complaint procedure can be viewed here.

People

Our Aim: Build an engaged and happy team with a ‘can-do’ attitude     

We understand that with a happy team, we will keep our people, make the most of their talent, and exceed expectations. We want our people to enjoy their work and the relationships they build every day. We’re happiest when they can fulfil their personal aspirations, be developed, rewarded, and achieve a genuine work-life balance.

Pay

All our staff are paid at or above the National Living Wage, and we make the required pension contributions.

We also plan to build on our existing commitments to our people in the following way through our ESG plan:

  • Actively promote and facilitate the Financial Security of employees
  • Foster and encourage the Career Development of our people
  • Provide a positive and responsive working environment for our teams and strive for high levels of employee Engagement & Satisfaction

Environmental

Our Aim: Minimise our environmental impact

Reducing our emissions to help prevent climate change is a critical issue for society which we take seriously. As well as lowering GHG emissions, we have a comprehensive approach to protecting the environment in every aspect of our operations.

We are currently working on several projects to achieve the first targets in the following areas:

  • Reduced energy consumption
  • Renewable sources for our electricity
  • Increased energy efficiency of lighting
  • Reduce pollution and emissions through reducing travel and switching to electric vehicles
  • Waste Management improvements, rolling out recycling facilities to all our sites, reducing our annual waste to landfill. We are also rolling out facilities to recycle toothbrushes and other oral health products, as well as day to day items such as printer cartridges, batteries etc.
  • Reduce natural resource consumption through transition to paperless systems
  • Compliance – there is an increasing requirement for companies to develop and publish plans and actions in relation to ESG impact. In preparation for our classification as a large business, we are working towards compliance with Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR), reporting on:
    • Annual greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumed within the UK including combustion of gas or transport fuel.
    • Report purchases of electricity.
    • Describe energy efficiency measures.
  • From 2022, large companies must also report to the Taskforce for Climate Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), designed to help investors understand a company’s exposure to climate risk.

Community

Our Aim: Enrich lives and strengthen the communities we represent and serve

We’re a company that actively supports our profession and our community. We aim to operate robust and meaningful partnerships with the charity and community organisations our teams and our group identify.

Our community strategy is in the first stages of development. We are selecting our Group charity partner and are piloting a practice level approach to charity and community partnerships, so that every one of our teams can engage meaningfully with the ESG strategy.

Our medium-term objectives for Community are:

  • Create genuine impact by strategically partnering with charities & community groups who match our business
  • Create impact for team members, patients and our partner charities through fundraising events and activities
  • Deploy our resources strategically to provide support to schools, community groups etc in our areas of expertise and knowledge
  • Establish a formal donations commitment to our community and charity activities and partnerships, including community funds and matched fundraising
  • Establish a 2-year partnership with tangible aims and outcomes not limited to finance with a group level charity
  • Establish a 2-year partnership framework for practice teams to implement, creating partnerships with local/sector charities that match the business geography/sector/strategic intent
  • Create a policy and procedures to encourage Employer Supported Volunteering
  • Create positive Economic Impact in our locations through job creation, local & independent procurement and hiring policies
  • Create a Corporate Citizenship Program to advocate for sector S&E policy change, services to disadvantaged groups and facility use
  • Ensure Charitable Giving and Community Investment is effective through Donation/Investment Policies and Practices