After 41 years working in the NHS, Dame Barbara Hakin has decided to retire. During her long career she has worked both as a hospital doctor and a GP for 20 years before taking up her first role helping manage the NHS, first as a Primary Care Trust Chief Executive in Bradford and then as a Strategic Health Authority Chief Executive in the East Midlands. Dr Hakin is currently National Director of Commissioning Operations at NHS England where she oversees operational delivery through NHS England’s regional and local teams. Dame Barbara helped oversee the development of the commissioning architecture of the NHS, and specifically the establishment and authorisation of Clinical Commissioning Groups.
Dame Barbara said: “It is a privilege to work for the NHS, both as a frontline doctor and as a manager. In both roles I have been able to serve patients. I believe strongly in the values of a health service based on clinical need, not ability to pay. But it is the people who work for the NHS which have made my job a pleasure. I will miss them and their commitment to improve care for their patients. That is what is most important.”
“NHS England has been a fantastic place to work and the support I’ve had from everyone there is brilliant. There comes a point in life, however, when time for other things becomes important.”
Simon Stevens will be appointing a successor to Dame Barbara in a reshaped national director role, on a similar timetable to the appointment of a combined chief executive for Monitor and TDA. The aim is to take the opportunity to ensure more aligned functions between the national NHS leadership bodies.
NHS England also intends to recruit to several senior clinical and operational leadership posts to drive forward other elements of the Five Year Forward View, including the Urgent and Emergency Care Review.
Dame Barbara will remain in post while her successor is recruited, expected to be by the end of the year.
Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of the NHS England, said: “Barbara’s immense personal contribution to the NHS has spanned four decades – as a clinician, manager and national leader. Colleagues who have worked with her down the years will greatly miss her distinctive blend of hard work, hands-on delivery, and commitment to improvement.”