Medway NHS FT announces new Interim Chief Executive

Medway NHS Foundation Trust has announced that Dr George Findlay will take over as Interim Chief Executive from 1 May 2021.

A specialist intensive care consultant with clinical leadership experience, Dr Findlay has been appointed to the interim role for 18 months. He will replace James Devine, who leaves at the end of April after four-and-a-half years.

Dr Findlay is currently Deputy Chief Executive and Chief Medical Officer at University Hospitals Sussex NHS Foundation Trust, following the merger between Western Sussex Hospitals (WSHT) and Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals (BSUH).

During his seven years at WSHT, the trust reportedly became the first non-specialist acute trust in the country to be rated ‘Outstanding’ in all the key inspection areas assessed by the Care Quality Commission. Dr Findlay has also been part of the leadership team at BSUH since 2017, during which the trust exited special measures and climbed three inspection ratings to ‘Outstanding’ for Caring and ‘Good’ overall.

Jo Palmer, Chair of Medway NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am delighted to welcome George to Medway. He joins us at an important time, just as we are entering the second phase of our improvement programme, and as we restart our services following the second wave of the pandemic.

“His experience at Western Sussex will be invaluable as we build on the foundations laid to improve the quality of care for our patients. George’s background will also help us build on our work to become more clinically led, putting our clinical colleagues at the heart of decision-making to enhance patient outcomes.”

Dr Findlay’s career has previously taken him from training as a medical student at Dundee University to a short service commission as a medical officer in the RAF.

After returning to the NHS in 1995, he eventually went on to become clinical advisor to the Welsh Government on organ donation and transplantation, from 2008 to 2014. During this time he drafted and consulted on new legislation, which culminated in the introduction of ‘presumed consent’ in Wales.

Dr Findlay also previously led the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death (NCEPOD) for 10 years.

Speaking of his appointment, Dr Findlay said: “I am very much looking forward to joining Medway, where I believe I will be able to make a difference to patient experience, as the trust continues to drive improvement across the hospital.”