Mark Fisher CBE has been appointed as chief executive designate of NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care.

Following a competitive national recruitment process, Mark will become Chief Executive when the new NHS body formally comes into being on July 1.

Mark, who lives in Holmfirth, West Yorkshire, has worked extensively across Government and brings a wealth of experience gained in a variety of public sector settings. He has held chief executive and director level roles, including at the Department of Work and Pensions, leading on work to reduce child poverty, creating jobs for young people and boosting skills investment for employers nationally.

Mark takes up the role after serving as director general and secretary to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, created to examine the circumstances leading up to and surrounding the fire at Grenfell Tower in June 2017, and was previously director of the office for civil society and innovation in the Cabinet Office, responsible for the Government’s relationship with the voluntary and community sector. Here, he oversaw an increase in young people taking part in National Citizen Service and supported a rise in charitable giving and volunteering, notably amongst young people and in health-related activities.

Welcoming his appointment Sir Richard Leese, chair designate of NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care Board said:

“Mark’s vast and varied experience means he will be an outstanding system leader, perfectly placed to drive forward our ambitious collective ambitions for the health and wellbeing of the people here.

“I have complete confidence that Mark will develop the full potential of our partnership working and, as a values-driven leader with extensive experience in leading and joining-up complex services, he will play a vital role in Greater Manchester’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I would like to thank Sarah Price, who will continue as interim chief officer for now, for her incredible professionalism, integrity and leadership over the last two years which have, without doubt, been our most challenging ever. She has played a key role in our region’s response to the pandemic and in building the foundations we need for a system which puts the health of our population at its heart.”

Commenting on his appointment, Mark said:

“It’s a huge privilege to be appointed as the first chief executive of NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care. The region has a long history of collaboration and partnership working, and we now have a real opportunity to make further change: to better address health inequalities, further improve clinical outcomes, and contribute to the wider social and economic development of Greater Manchester.

“It is from the diverse and vibrant communities of Greater Manchester that comes the incredible team of NHS and care staff, unpaid carers and volunteers, who have gone well above and beyond in very difficult circumstances recently. They have already demonstrated the impact we can have when we all work together as one system.

“There are undoubtedly big challenges ahead, but I am very much looking forward to being part of one of the most ambitious integrated care systems in the country, working with and for all the people and communities of Greater Manchester.

“Working on the Grenfell Tower Inquiry has been an immense privilege. I move in July as the formal hearings are scheduled to finish, and as Sir Martin Moore-Bick and the Inquiry Panel begin to draw their conclusions about the causes of the tragedy and write their final report for the Prime Minister.”

Greater Manchester was England’s first integrated care system, with its unique devolution arrangements since 2016. It has been instrumental in shaping the design of these new national partnerships to support local health and care needs. Integrated care systems champion joined up working, which is just as much about improving people’s lives – enabling people to live independent, active, and healthy lives – as it is making the system work better for the public and the professionals who serve it so they can work more closely and effectively together

Recruitment to key leadership roles within NHS Greater Manchester Integrated Care is continuing at pace with key director roles like medical and nursing leads to be appointed over the coming weeks.

The Health and Care Bill, setting out these proposed reforms, is due its third reading in the House of Lords this month.

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