Matthew Taylor appointed as new chief executive of the NHS Confederation

Matthew Taylor

The chief executive of the Royal Society for Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) Matthew Taylor has been appointed as the new chief executive of the NHS Confederation.

Matthew will join the NHS Confederation in the summer after 15 years leading the RSA. During that time, he has transformed the RSA into a global institution, with 30,000 fellows and a high-profile and influential research programme.

He will take over from Danny Mortimer, who has been acting chief executive of the NHS Confederation since September 2020. Danny will return to his substantive role as deputy chief executive of the NHS Confederation and chief executive of NHS Employers (which is part of the Confederation).

Matthew has enjoyed a distinguished career at the heart of public policy, which includes time in No. 10 as the Chief Adviser on Political Strategy to then Prime Minister Tony Blair, and a four-year tenure leading the Institute for Public Policy Research. He is a widely-known commentator on policy, politics and public service reform, and regularly appears on national media programmes, including as a panellist on BBC Radio 4’s Moral Maze. He was also commissioned by the Conservative Government in 2016 to carry out an independent review into modern employment practices. Matthew started his career as a health policy researcher in the West Midlands.

Matthew will join the NHS Confederation as the organisation launches a new strategy to coincide with the most important set of reforms to the NHS in a decade, which will see legislative changes that underpin moves to integrate care in the English NHS.

As the only membership body for the whole healthcare system, the Confederation is uniquely placed to promote collaboration and partnership working among the organisations it represents throughout the health systems of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In the last year, the Confederation has launched networks for integrated care systems and primary care networks, which complement the support the organisation already provides to acute, community, mental health and ambulance service trusts, as well as to commissioners.

Lord Victor Adebowale, chair of the NHS Confederation, said: “I am delighted to announce that Matthew Taylor will become the new chief executive of the NHS Confederation. He is an exceptional appointment and is joining at a time of renewal for the UK NHS and for the Confederation. He brings a remarkable depth of experience at the heart of government and public policy and is a compelling advocate for our members as they face the challenges of recovering from the pandemic and delivering better health for all the communities they serve.   

“As the only membership body for the whole healthcare system, we bring together, support and speak for leaders and organisations across the sector. Our new strategy supports greater integration across our membership, connecting different parts of the system to share learning and to respond to shared challenges. This is an exciting moment for the NHS and for the Confederation as we look to build on the service innovation and new ways of working that have been a feature of the pandemic and lock them in to improve care for the public.

“I would like to thank Danny Mortimer for his leadership over the past eight months. Danny has ensured that the Confederation has maintained high levels of support for our members during this unprecedented period. He has provided national leadership on the key challenges facing our members and has been a high-profile figure in public debate. He has also led the organisation through a major change programme internally that will see us increase and enhance the support we provide to our members as we head into a new era of integration and collaboration.”

Matthew Taylor said: “The NHS is the most revered institution this country has created and is admired around the world. It represents the best of us and will play a vital role as we start the recovery process from coronavirus. I am proud to be joining the NHS Confederation at this pivotal time, as we look to build on the innovation and new ways of working that have been a feature of the pandemic and lock them in to improve care for the public.

“I started my career researching health policy and have worked with health and care leaders over the years. Some of the most impressive and talented people I have met work in the NHS. I look forward to supporting and working alongside our inspirational members.”

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