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New chair appointed at Northumbria Healthcare

Thursday, 28 January, 2016
New chair appointed at Northumbria Healthcare

A new chair is set to take the helm at one of the country’s leading NHS foundation trusts and will be at the forefront of developing pioneering new models of integrated health and care services for local people. 

Alan Richardson has been appointed to lead Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust and will succeed Brian Flood when he steps down at the end of March after successfully leading the organisation for the past 17 years.  

A chartered engineer by background, Alan has a wealth of experience running large and successful organisations. He has served on several boards, most notably Scottish Power Plc, Reyrolle Ltd and Glasgow Development Agency.  Most recently Alan served as chair of Coventry University for the past six years.

He recently moved back to his native North East and lives in South Tyneside.  He is married with two children and five grandchildren.

Alan joins the trust at a very exciting time having last year successfully transformed emergency care across Northumberland and North Tyneside with the opening of the Northumbria Specialist Emergency Care Hospital and introduction of seven-day consultant-led specialist emergency care.

The result of ten years of planning, the new model of care at Northumbria Healthcare means thousands of patients are now being assessed, diagnosed and treated much quicker than ever before following emergency admission to hospital and is the result of the positive leadership culture which the trust has embedded.

Described by NHS England as one of the ‘best-run’ organisations in Britain, Alan will guide Northumbria Healthcare as it leads a number of exciting projects as part of the national vision for the future of the NHS. 

This includes work with partners across Northumberland to create an integrated primary and acute care system, working with the King’s Fund in London to spearhead the development of positive cultures and leadership capability across the NHS, and working with NHS organisations nationwide to share its expertise by becoming a ‘multihospital chain’.

Mr David Evans, chief executive of Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am delighted that Alan is to join us and look forward to working with him to build on the strong foundations we’ve put in place over many years to ensure that our patients are the heart of everything we do, and every decision we make.

“We are very proud of the culture we have created to ensure our staff are empowered to make improvements to patient care, however, we fully recognise there is always more we can do and are keen to work with Alan in order to us to do this.

“As we prepare to move into the next chapter for the trust, I would also like to pay tribute to Brian and thank him for his unparalleled commitment, vision and leadership. On behalf of the board, governors and all our staff, we wish him all the very best for his retirement.”

On the appointment, Alan said: “I am looking forward to starting my new role with Northumbria Healthcare and joining the trust at such an exciting time.

“There are many challenges facing our health and care system and it is a privilege to join such a forward-thinking organisation which is at the forefront of change in the NHS and developing better models of care which are built around patient need. 

“I have been very impressed with the patient and community-focussed approach at Northumbria and have only heard good reports about the care that it delivers and the culture it has created.

“I’m confident that by working together we can continue to improve for the benefit of patients, staff and local communities.”

As chair, Alan will lead the trust’s Council of Governors which represent the 500,000 population of Northumberland and North Tyneside and become one of the Northumbria’s key representatives both nationally and within the local community.

He succeeds Brian Flood, who has been chair of Northumbria Healthcare since 1998 when the trust was formed, following the merger of hospitals in North Tyneside, Wansbeck and Hexham and community services in Northumberland.

During his time as chair, Brian has overseen the transformation of services for the 500,000 population of Northumberland in North Tyneside with Northumbria now rated as one of the safest and best performing NHS organisations in England.