WORKFORCE: A troubleshooting commissioning boss is taking over as interim chief officer of Wirral Clinical Commissioning Group.

John Wicks will join the North West CCG, which was probed by NHS England earlier this year in relation to serious concerns about its leadership.

The CCG chair and accountable officer “stepped away” from their duties to make way for the review, which concluded in September that the group’s structures were “not fit for purpose”.

Mr Wicks joins the body from Warrington CCG, where he was also interim chief officer. Before that he steered Herefordshire CCG through an “organisational recovery plan”.

John Wicks

John Wicks is taking over as interim chief officer of Wirral CCG

Mr Wicks told HSJ that he was “helping [Wirral CCG] with a gap while they recruit permanently”.

It is intended that he will serve a four month period, after which a permanent appointee will take the reins.

He said a key part of his job would be implementing the recommendations of the NHS England review.

The CCG has already formally adopted a revised constitution and reviewed its organisational structure.

“My remit as I go in has been not to reinvent the wheel, not to go in, decide that I would prefer to do things differently,” he said.

“It’s very much ‘we’ve thought long and hard about this, we’ve made the right changes and we’re now into implementation of those changes’.”

A spokesman for the CCG said that Phil Jennings, the former chair, and Abhi Mantgani, the former accountable officer, “remain temporarily stepped aside”.

They have been in this position for six months.

Jon Develing, NHS England’s regional operations director in the North, returns to his substantive role at the national commissioning body after a stint as Wirral CCG’s accountable officer.

Pete Naylor, the CCG’s assistant clinical chair, remains interim chair.