Commercial law firm Beachcroft has appointed former Healthcare Commission chair Sir Ian Kennedy to lead its new NHS health advisory service.

It will provide strategic counselling to trusts seeking foundation status, plus regulatory advice and access to policy makers.

Sir Ian has specialised in health law and policy for 30 years. He will be supported by Ray Tarling, most recently trust secretary and head of corporate affairs at Guy’s and St Thomas’ foundation trust.

Sir Ian was previously chairman of the Healthcare Commission, a member and chair of the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, a member of the General Medical Council and a member of the Medicines Commission.

This year he was appointed chairman of an international panel that designates academic health science centres. He is the author of leading texts on medical law and of more than 120 papers.

He said: “The opportunity to shape a new consultancy for organisations operating in that environment, applying my wide experience and that of Beachcroft, is an exciting one. I’m looking forward to getting started.”