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NHS Confederation appoints Mike Farrar as chief executive 

The NHS Confederation has appointed Mike Farrar as chief executive of the NHS Confederation.

The NHS Confederation today (Monday) announced that Mike Farrar is to be its new chief executive.

Mr Farrar, currently Chief Executive of North West Strategic Health Authority, plans to spend a period of time meeting and listening to the organisation’s members in the NHS and independent sector before taking over from Acting Chief Executive Nigel Edwards. Mr Edwards will remain in post during the interim.

The Confederation’s Chairman Sir Keith Pearson said:

“Mike is an outstanding leader who knows healthcare inside out.  He really understands the concerns of our members and I know he will give them a strong and powerful voice on the national stage.

"We chose Mike from an exceptional field and I am delighted that we have someone who is so well known and respected throughout the healthcare world. 

"He has a clear vision of what the Confed should be in future and I believe the organisation will go from strength to strength under his leadership.”

Mr Farrar said:

“I couldn’t be more pleased to be joining the NHS Confederation. This is an absolutely critical time for the NHS and there has never been a more important time for the organisation to be punching its weight and shaping the system on behalf of all its members. 

"I want to build a stronger Confed for the future.  I want to ensure that all our members’ voices are heard from the beginning to the end of the policy process. And I am particularly keen to ensure that we improve the relationship between heath and social care on behalf of patients.

"But first I want to hear what our members have to say.  I look forward to speaking to people from all parts of the system and in all parts of the country over the coming weeks.”

Mr Farrar has been chief executive of the North West England SHA since May 2006. 

He was previously chief executive of West Yorkshire and South Yorkshire Strategic Health Authorities, chief executive of Tees Valley Health Authority and head of primary care at the Department of Health. During his time at the Department of Health, he was responsible for establishing primary care groups, primary care trusts and Personal Medical Services (PMS).

Mr Farrar chaired the Strategic Health Authority Chief Executive's Group from 2002 to 2009. He chaired the NHS Confederation GP Contract negotiating team that successfully negotiated the new General Medical Service contract.  He also worked as the national programme director of NHS Live. He currently chairs the Office for Life Sciences Innovation Delivery Board.

Mr Farrar is also a board member of Sport England, where he has also acted as interim chair, and in August 2009  was appointed as National Tsar for Sport and Health.

Notes to Editors

The NHS Confederation is the only body to bring together the full range of organisations that make up the modern NHS. We are an independent membership organisation that represents all types of providers and commissioners of NHS services in England. We also represent trusts and health care boards in Wales; and health and social service trusts and boards in Northern Ireland.

Contact Francesca Reville 020 7074 3312, 07884 473086 or Niall Smith 020 7074 3304, 07767 770309 or James Pritchard 020 7074 3306, 07525 681567.  For out of hours media enquiries, please call the Duty Press Officer on 07880 500726.

Current acting CEO Nigel Edwards plans to leave the Confederation in September to allow for a suitable hand-over period. He plans to work independently providing policy advice and expertise to a range of organisations including the Kings Fund and Nuffield Trust.

Mr Edwards to continue to deliver some ongoing work for the NHS Confederation post-September – in particular assisting with policy work that has an international focus it is also expected that the NHS Confederation will continue to commission additional work from him.

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Niall Smith
020 7074 3304

James Pritchard
020 7074 3437

Francesca Reville
020 7799 8633

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