Chairs and non-executive directors are crucial to providing the governance needed to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan. They also play a key role in driving forward transformational change across the health service.
But as a community of leaders, they are often not representative of the staff they govern or inclusive of the communities they serve.
Research suggests that they are insufficiently diverse across gender, race, disability and age to be as effective as they need to be.
To address this, the NHS Confederation is establishing an independent taskforce to improve the diversity of chairs and non-executive directors in the NHS.
Made up of senior leaders from across the NHS, the taskforce will consider the recruitment processes and retention strategies needed to diversify the composition of NHS boards and governing bodies.
It will work closely with NHS England and NHS Improvement and will be supported by Baroness Dido Harding, chair of NHS Improvement, and Prerana Issar, chief people officer at NHS England and NHS Improvement.
Joan Saddler, director of partnerships and equality at the NHS Confederation, and Dr Clare Gerada, co-chair of the NHS Assembly, will chair the taskforce.
Find out more about the working group, its members and why diverse leadership matters for the sustainability of the NHS.