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Interim regional directors named by NHSE

Published on: 4 Jul 2024

NHS England has named interim regional directors for the North West, and North East and Yorkshire, after the incumbent’s retirement.

Richard Barker left last week after announcing his retirement from NHSE earlier this year, having held the RD post for both regions.

North West medical director Michael Gregory will be interim RD for that region; Robert Cornell, currently NEY director of specialist commissioning, is interim RD for the North East, NHSE confirmed.

Dr Gregory is a former clinical director, GP, and forensic physician. Mr Cornell has worked in NHSE specialised commissioning roles.

HSJ understands interviews for the permanent RD in the North West have taken place and a substantive appointment is due to be confirmed in the coming weeks. The region is grappling with some of the NHS’s biggest financial problems.

The RDs report to Dame Emily Lawson, who was appointed as interim NHSE chief operating officer in the autumn following the departure of Sir David Sloman then Sir Jim Mackey. She has since been appointed substantively in the COO role.