Leading health care in London

The King's Fund
Event type: 
Board Leadership Programme

About this event

The recent NHS re-organisation and the abolition of strategic health authorities and primary care trusts have resulted in an absence of health system leadership in London.

The financial and service challenges facing the NHS in London will not be met by the new NHS organisations established in April. This is the stark conclusion of the updated analysis of health care in London by The King's Fund. At a time of acute finanicial and service challenges, this report asks where responsibility for leading improvements will rest in future.

The report outlines the changes accomplished in the past 18 months, and its authors argue that the new NHS structures are unlikely to provide the leadership needed to meet the challenges ahead – and they are by no means a permanent solution. The complexity and urgency of the challenges facing health care in London require a radically different approach to the rest of England.

This session will set out the main findings of the Fund's report and discuss what is now being done to act on its findings, including the involvement of the Mayor and the Greater London Authority.

The speakers

Ruth Carnall

Ruth Carnall has more than 30 years' experience in health care, 20 years of which were as a chief executive in the NHS covering acute hospitals, mental health and community services and health authorities. She has worked in senior positions at a local, regional and national level, covering operational, strategic and policy roles.

Ruth was responsible for the NHS in London as Chief Executive of NHS London. In this capacity, she oversaw an extensive programme of performance improvement and strategic change. The results of this work are widely recognised in the United Kingdom and internationally.

Prior to joining NHS London, Ruth worked as an independent consultant with public and private sector clients, including Department of Health, Monitor, Health Authorities, NHS trusts and Glaxo, as well as the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit, the Cabinet Office, the Home Office and the Ministry of Justice. Ruth also has experience as a non-executive director of a public company, chair of a private company and trustee of a charity. She has also provided coaching support to senior executives.

Ruth has a strong reputation in leadership development and the creation of high-performing teams. She is frequently asked to speak about her experience in the United Kingdom and abroad.

In 2011 Ruth was made a Dame Commander of the British Empire for her achievements in health care.

Chris Ham

Chris Ham took his post as Chief Executive of The King's Fund in April 2010.

He has been professor of Health Policy and Management at the University of Birmingham, England, since 1992. From 2000 to 2004, he was seconded to the Department of Health, where he was director of the Strategy Unit, working with ministers on NHS reform. Chris is the author of 20 books and numerous articles about health policy and management. He was awarded a CBE in 2004 and an honourary doctorate by the University of Kent in 2012.

Chris has advised the World Health Organization and the World Bank and has served as a consultant to governments in a number of countries. He is an honourary fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of London and of the Royal College of General Practicioners, an honorary professor at the London School of Hygeine & Tropical Medicine, and a companion of the Institute of Health Care Management.

Chris was a governor and then a non-executive director of the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust between 2007 and 2010. He has also served as a governor of the Canadian Health Services Research Foundation and the Health Foundation.