Leading through Covid-19: supporting health and care leaders in unprecedented times

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The health and care system in the United Kingdom is facing a huge challenge, placing enormous pressure on health and care staff with unprecedented demands on leaders, wherever they work.

These pages aim to provide support to health and care leaders, whether you are working in the NHS, social care, public health or the voluntary and independent sector. We want to ensure this is practical, helpful and works for you. So please use the form below to tell us how we can help. After that, you'll find the first of our quick-read practical guides and videos.


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The latest content

This week, we hear from Jatinder Harchowal, Director of Pharmacy at London’s Nightingale Hospital, about creating a common purpose and a supportive culture. We also outline some simple suggestions that can help you to connect with colleagues, collectively download what's happening for you and together, think about how best to lead. 


Creating a common purpose and a supportive culture

We spoke to Jatinder Harchowal, Director of Pharmacy at London’s Nightingale Hospital, about creating a common purpose and a supportive culture. (3-minute video)


The nurturing role of leaders

We spoke to Dr Navina Evans, Chief Executive of the East London Foundation Trust, about the importance of nurturing as a leader. (2-minute video)


Looking after colleagues during the Covid-19 crisis

We spoke to Michael West, Visiting Fellow at The King's Fund about why compassion is key to looking after colleagues during the Covid-19 pandemic. (3-minute video)


Responding to the Covid-19 crisis: Don Berwick

We spoke to Don Berwick to ask him how leaders can take care of themselves and their teams during this crisis. (3-minute video)


Making decisions in difficult circumstances

We spoke to Dr Sabrina Cohen-Hatton, Chief Fire Officer for West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service, about how leaders can make decisions in difficult circumstances during the Covid-19 crisis. (3-minute video)


Why is leadership important right now?

We spoke to Prerana Issar, the Chief People Officer for the NHS, to ask her why leadership is so important during the Covid-19 crisis. (5-minute video)


Finding solutions in complex situations

We asked Ian Bullock, Chief Executive of the Royal College of Physicians, about how leaders can find solutions in complex situations. (2-minute video)


Adapting to changing circumstances

When the world is changing, how can leaders help their teams to adapt to changing circumstances? We hear from Don Berwick. (2-minute video)


Supporting leaders through the Covid-19 outbreak

Richard Murray explains how, through these pages, The King’s Fund and others are aiming to provide support to health and care leaders and how we'll be guided by what you tell us is needed. (2-minute read)


What challenges are health and care leaders facing?

Deborah Fenney and Lillie Wenzel reflect on what heath and care leaders have told The King’s Fund about the challenges they are currently facing and outline how we’re using this to shape our Leading through Covid-19 resources. (3-minute read)


Creating space for conversations

When people are stressed and anxious, creating a shared, safe space to keep thinking and to maintain and develop relationships with colleagues is important. We have developed some suggestions for having virtual conversations. (3-minute read)


Resources supporting our mental health and wellbeing

We have brought together some resources providing practical tools and information to support the mental health and wellbeing of health and care workers during the Covid-19 crisis. (3-minute read)


Leading council efforts through Covid-19

More than one million workers in more than 400 councils have been helping to keep essential services running across UK during the Covid-19 crisis. Here, 15 council leaders share their top tips for leading in this challenging time. (4-minute read)


Discipline and agility in a crisis

In a time of crisis, it is common to rely on command and control management approaches. So, how can we move away from this to create systems that combine both discipline and agility when responding to extreme events?  (4-minute read)


Managing anxiety: breathing

At a time when many leaders and clinical staff are under enormous pressure, taking time to notice and reflect on your own breathing can help to anchor you in your leadership role. (3-minute read)


Heroic leadership: the order of the day?

Leadership is about relationships, not being a superhero. We've set out five key points to keep in mind that can help support you and your team to retain your collective strength. (3-minute read)


Managing anxiety about loss

What are you afraid of losing as the pandemic unfolds? We have summarised four strategies for surviving and managing our anxiety about loss, which may be useful to you and your teams. (4-minute read)


Managing your energy

The practice of restorative self-care among leaders is hugely important for sustaining energy and building resilience in the weeks and months ahead. (3-minute read)


Responding to stress experienced by hospital staff working with Covid-19

We have developed a graphic as a quick reference version of the guide created by the COVID Trauma Response Working Group. (4-minute read)


The space to think

At a time of immense pressure on both the health and care system and on individuals – and when everything is changing so fast – how can you find space to think about how you are leading? (3-minute read)


Leading virtual meetings – top tips

Leading virtually can seem challenging, but a few basic technical and human skills will help you to engage with colleagues and ensure your virtual meetings are productive. (4-minute read)


A brief introduction to teaming

Covid-19 has meant people who don’t know each other are coming together to tackle complex and urgent challenges. How can people work together and support each other effectively in these circumstances? (3-minute read)

Have a bit more time? Read these blogs


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