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NHSE appoints new regional director

Published on: 15 Dec 2021

NHS England has appointed an interim regional director for London, and confirmed Sir David Sloman’s appointment as chief operating officer.

Andrew Ridley will lead the London regional office on an interim basis, and a recruitment process will begin for a substantive replacement for Sir David.

The appointment of Sir David, the former boss of the Royal Free London FT, as chief operating officer for NHSE was reported by HSJ two weeks ago.

NHSE last night confirmed this and said Mr Ridley, who is chief executive of Central London Community Healthcare Trust, will step into the London role.

Mr Ridley has led CLCHT for five years, overseeing a significant expansion in the services it provides. Previously he has held national roles, worked as NHS England regional director for the south of England from 2014 to 2016, and also held senior roles including CEO at Tower Hamlets Primary Care Trust between 2005 and 2011.

Sir David replaces Mark Cubbon, who has been working as interim chief operating officer in since the summer when Amanda Pritchard left it to become NHSE chief. 

Mr Cubbon, who was previously deputy COO, has now been appointed “chief delivery officer”, a new post, and Ms Pritchard said in a letter to staff that he “will resume his responsibility for Long Term Plan delivery and will take on SRO responsibility for the merger of NHS England and NHS Improvement with Health Education England, NHS Digital and NHSX, reporting directly to me”.

NHSE’s announcement also said Sir Jim Mackey would ”lead our national elective recovery effort, as the [senior responsible officer] and national director of elective recovery”. The former NHS Improvement chief executive and Northumbria Healthcare Foundation Trust boss was announced in September as an “elective recovery adviser” to NHSE, expected to be a two-days-per-week role.

A national programme director for elective recovery was being recruited to support Sir Jim’s role, NHSE’s announcement said. 

The news comes as the most recent official data showed 15,927 patients waiting more than two years for treatment and 313,000 waiting more than a year.