NHS Confederation to start search for new chair with Stephen Dorrell set to step down

Written by: Mike Wood
Published on: 1 Jul 2019

The Rt Hon Stephen Dorrell will step down from his role as Chair of the NHS Confederation later this year, with the organisation set to begin the search for a successor in July.

Mr Dorrell, a former Secretary of State for Health and Chair of the Commons Health Select Committee, has been Chair of the NHS Confederation since October 2015.

Over that time he has recruited Chief Executive Niall Dickson and helped to expand the organisation’s leadership role in the sector, ensuring that the NHS Confederation is well positioned to support its members – front-line organisations across the UK health service – as they move towards greater collaboration and system working.

Mr Dorrell is also Chair of the European Movement and earlier this year he was a candidate in the European Parliament Election on the Change UK list in the West Midlands. He now wishes to devote more time to these political activities.

Mr Dorrell said: “It has been a privilege and an honour to lead the NHS Confederation at this critical time in the evolution of the health service. I believe the only way the service will be able to meet the critical challenges it faces is if all parts of the system come together to work towards common goals. I think the Confederation is well placed to convene and support our members at both local and system level to find the right solutions that put the NHS on a more sustainable pathway. I know the Confederation will continue to make a vital contribution, both in terms of our support for members and in speaking truth to power.”

Commenting on the announcement, Chief Executive Niall Dickson said: “Stephen is a formidable force in UK health policy and his insights, expertise and knowledge have greatly benefited the Confederation and our members. He helped steer us through a new strategy and vision for the organisation that will ensure we provide greater support to our members, and exert greater influence on their behalf with national policy-makers. We are grateful to him for his support and guidance over the past four years, and he will leave strong foundations for our next Chair to build on.”

Prem Singh, Senior Independent Trustee at the Confederation and Chair of Derbyshire Community Health Services Trust, added: “On behalf of the Board of Trustees of the Confederation, I would like to express our gratitude and thanks to Stephen for the role he has played in helping to rejuvenate the organisation. There is more work to be done but he leaves us in a stronger position. We look forward to working with Stephen in his remaining time as Chair and will now begin the process for finding his successor.” 

Full details of how to apply for the role of Chair of the NHS Confederation will be made public in July.

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