Former success regime and SHA boss to lead troubled STP

Sir Neil McKay has been appointed as chair of the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent sustainability and transformation partnership, sources have told HSJ.

Neil McKay

His appointment comes after the STP area was put in the CEP by NHS England and NHS Improvement.

He has also previously been chief operating officer at the Department of Health and was chief executive of the East of England Strategic Health Authority.

Sir Neil will start on 23rd October and is replacing the current STP chair David Pearson. The chair of Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership Trust was appointed as interim chair of the STP in April.

Mr Pearson will go back to his role as chair of Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership Trust.

An NHSI spokeswoman said: “David Pearson has done an incredible job in his role as interim chair and we thank him for his invaluable contribution, particularly for bringing different system partners together so successfully. The improvements that Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent needs to make for its residents will only be achieved through strong partnership working between the NHS and local authority organisations, and the foundations now in place need to be built upon.”

NHS organisations across the STP patch face significant financial challenges. HSJ revealed in April the STP had a gap of £68m between its organisations’ combined overspends and control totals, which was the biggest in the country.

In June, NHS England warned that areas in the CEP would need to “think the unthinkable” to make the savings needed in their systems.

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent STP also faces significant performance problems in emergency services and is one of the worst areas in the country for delayed discharge rates.

David Pearson, interim chair of the Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent STP said: “I took on the role of Chair on an interim basis while the recruitment was conducted for an Independent Chair. I am delighted that someone with a national profile has been appointed.

”I am positive and optimistic about our ability to build on the progress that has been made in the last few months. I have overseen the appointment of a new team, including Simon Whitehouse as director, and started a review of the governance arrangements to take us from planning to implementation.”

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