• HSJ revealed plans to create role in March
  • COO will be nominated NHSI CEO for regulatory purposes

NHS England and Improvement have posted a job advert for their joint chief operating officer, who will also be the nominated chief executive of NHSI.

The chief operating officer will be directly accountable to NHSE chief executive Simon Stevens. 

HSJ revealed plans to create a chief operating officer post in March, as well as revealing NHS Improvement chief executive Ian Dalton was quitting and NHS England deputy chief executive Matthew Swindells’ post was being disbanded

The organisations, which began working together as a single organisation at the start of April, indicated last year they could not legally have a single chair and chief executive across the two bodies. The chief operating officer will be formally designated as NHSI’s chief executive for regulatory purposes. 

The COO job advert describes the role as “one of the most senior jobs in the largest publicly funded healthcare system in the world”. Key responsibilities include leading on the implementation of the NHS long-term plan and NHS operational delivery. 

“The post requires an exceptional individual who can deliver transformational change, within a complex environment,” the job advert continues. “It also requires an individual of proven integrity, who role models values-based leadership and has the track record to command the confidence and trust of NHS staff and leadership, other national health organisations, the Department of Health and Social Care and government.”

When plans to create the role first emerged, HSJ understood Mr Dalton was not interested in appplying. While Mr Swindells could have been moved into the role, it was also understood the NHSE/I leadership wanted a senior NHS leader from outside of the organisations.

Names reported to be under consideration for the role included Guy’s and St Thomas’ Amanda Pritchard, Leeds Teaching Hospitals’ Julian Hartley and Central and North West London’s Claire Murdoch, London regional director Sir David Sloman and national emergency and elective care director Pauline Philip.

Applications for the chief operating officer position, which is advertised with a “competitive” salary, close on Wendesday 22 May. 

Matthew Swindells to leave NHS England for private sector work