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Jon Kennard


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News: National centre of excellence for NHS leaders opens


A world class national centre designed to produce and inspire current and future generations of NHS leaders to drive improvements in patient care, has been launched.

According to the press release, The NHS Leadership Academy will "help develop outstanding leadership in order to improve patients’ experiences, their health outcomes and their wellbeing."

"To do this it will work with doctors, nurses, health professionals and managers from across the NHS. It will also work with public health and social care, and with local government, where Health and Wellbeing Boards are key to improving health and care outcomes."

Secretary of State for Health Andrew Lansley unveiled plans for the Academy in July last year.

NHS Chief Executive Sir David Nicholson said the Academy would be critical to delivering the strategic shift in leadership needed for the NHS in the coming years.

He said: “The ethos is simple. NHS success is dependent on great leadership right across the service, across clinicians and managers. Great leaders create working climates where people working with them feel engaged, empowered and satisfied. Those people in turn have a direct positive impact on patients’ experiences and their health outcomes. Everyone working for, with or on behalf of the NHS has a crucial role to play in this, as we focus on our purpose of improving health outcomes for our patients.”

“We face huge challenges across the world of health, social care and public health. Our leaders must be better equipped and more innovative than ever before. Vitally, they must be able to work in an integrated way across health and social care, to make sure people have a consistently good experience of our services.

“Developing outstanding leadership has never been more important than now.”

Jim Easton is Director of Transformation for the NHS Commissioning Board.

He said: “The Academy will provide expertise and support to help the leaders we have now. At the same time it will support the development of a new generation. They will steer the NHS into a future which builds on our existing strengths and adds new ones, championing clinical leadership, inclusion, equality and diversity, and encouraging innovation.

“People will be able to access this learning and support from an ‘entry’ level to the most senior and experienced leaders. The Academy will give them all tools, techniques, support and behaviours to help them engage and enable their staff, partners and patients, as well as continually improving standards.

“'With change at a scale and pace the NHS has never seen before, the fundamental difference between success and failure is the calibre of leadership.”

Peter Lees FRCS MRCP, is Founding Director of the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management.

He said: “The Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management believes the evidence that good leadership improves the quality of patient care; we are setting the standards for good medical leadership and will help all doctors to enhance their leadership skills through strong partnerships with the Medical Royal Colleges and NHS partners.

“We, therefore, welcome the timely establishment of the NHS Leadership Academy and look forward to a very constructive working relationship.”

NHS Confederation chief executive Mike Farrar said: "The NHS faces a number of major challenges over the coming years which will require strong leadership and brave decisions.

"If we want the service to be the best it can be for patients, it is essential we provide senior leaders with the appropriate forum to come together and use their knowledge and skills to tackle the big issues.

"The NHS Leadership Academy will provide a useful platform to help establish collaborative and  innovative approaches to healthcare, and embrace the talent and ideas of our future leaders."

The Academy launches its new website with video stories from some of the NHS’s most inspiring clinical and managerial leaders about their work and its impact on the NHS and patients.

Author Profile Picture
Jon Kennard

Freelance writer

Read more from Jon Kennard

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