Published: 04/04/2002, Volume II2, No. 5799 Page 7

One thousand 'modernisers' from across the health service are to be signed up by the NHS Modernisation Agency as associates by next April, an HSJ seminar heard last week.

Addressing the first in a series of HSJ Breakfast with Champions meetings, agency director David Fillingham said 54 associates were starting a three-month pilot with the agency to create a 'national modernisation movement'.

He said he wanted to get every member of staff involved in the agenda. Less than 15 per cent of NHS staff are actively involved in modernisation, according to the agency, and it is aiming to raise that figure to 100 per cent.

Mr Fillingham said: 'Associates do not work for the agency, but they are modernisers with excellent skills and we want a special relationship with them. . We will provide three to five days per year for personal development, and they will give us three to five days per year core consultancy. It should be like fellowship of a royal college.'

The pilot phase will include workshops, links to agency training programmes and an agency buddy system.

The next Breakfast with Champions meeting will be held in Birmingham in May.