NHS England appoints senior local government leader as National Learning Disability Director

NHS England has today announced the appointment of Ray James as its first National Learning Disability Director, to drive improvement across the country on services to people with a learning disability, their families and carers.

Ray is the former national president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services and the long-standing executive director of health, housing and adult social care at the London Borough of Enfield.

Ray has led on significant programmes of work nationally and at Enfield he has led teams who have achieved multiple award-winning services in respect of safeguarding, community involvement and independent living for disabled adults.

Commenting on the appointment Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England and Regional Director for London, said:  “Ray has huge experience in local government and is a great addition to the NHS England team. We are committed to ensuring people with a learning disability get the right care and support using innovative services. Ray’s experience and knowledge will help ensure continuing progress across the NHS, local government and the third sector on our shared mission to drive new options for people with learning disabilities.”

Ray James said: “I’m delighted to have this opportunity to lead the NHS’s work with and for people with a learning disability and/or autism, their families and carers.  I am particularly pleased to bring my background and values from a career in local government and social care to this role.  There is much to do if we are to realise our ambition to support people to lead independent, inclusive lives in their communities, able to access high quality, care, support and/or treatment services when needed.  I am looking forward to the challenges and opportunities over the next couple of years and also want to express my thanks to all at Enfield Council for supporting my secondment.”