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Wednesday 08 June 2022

MiP calls for honesty and investment in implementing Messenger review

By MiP

MiP welcomes Sir Gordon Messenger's independent review of health and social care leadership and calls for honesty and investment in implementing its recommendations.

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MiP has welcomed the publication of Sir Gordon Messenger’s independent review of health and social care leadership. The review, the biggest of its kind in decades, sets out clear recommendations to better support health leaders in delivering the best care possible for patients.

The seven recommendations are:

  1. Targeted interventions on collaborative leadership and a unified set of values across health and social care
  2. Action to improve equality, diversity and inclusion
  3. Consistent management standards delivered through accredited training
  4. A simplified, standard appraisal system for the NHS
  5. A new career and talent management function for managers
  6. More effective recruitment and development of non-executive directors
  7. Encouraging top talent into challenged parts of the system

Responding to the report, MiP chief executive Jon Restell said:

“Healthcare leaders do a fantastic job under immense pressure and this report rightly recognises their incredible efforts, especially over the last two years. The report grasps the huge external pressures including from politicians that shape the management culture of the NHS.

“Managers throughout health and care need to be equipped with the right resources to better support their own development and to become the best leaders possible. They are too often blamed by politicians during difficult periods, but rarely given the extra support and resources they need to deliver the best care possible for patients during these times.

“The recommendations outlined in this report should lead to more support for staff in leadership roles, and they will be widely backed by our members who are keen to change the working environment. But sustained investment and focus will be essential, often lacking in the past. Healthcare leaders must also continue to be engaged during the implementation process, as Sir Gordon has done well to date. Otherwise these changes will lack bite.

“We look forward to supporting the implementation of this report. But we need honesty about what NHS managers can do without enough staff to tackle the backlog of NHS care. At the end of the day, action to retain and recruit the staff will have more impact than anything else.”

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