Board governance

The Governance manual sets out how NHS England is governed and consists of the standing orders, the scheme of delegation and the standing financial instructions.

Standing orders

The Standing Orders are the rules of procedure which govern the NHS England board.  

Scheme of delegation

The Scheme of delegation sets out the formally delegated responsibilities of NHS England’s functions, duties and powers to directors and officers of NHS England.  

Standing financial instructions

The Standing Financial Instructions detail financial responsibilities, policies and procedures adopted by NHS England. They are designed to ensure that our financial transactions are carried out in accordance with the law and government policy in order to achieve probity, accuracy, economy, efficiency and effectiveness. 

Board members’ register of interests and declarations

In accordance with the standing orders, NHS England is required to maintain a publicly available register of board members’ interests. The register contains, as they become available, the  declarations of interest made by NHS England members.

Details of business expenses, gifts and hospitality and external meetings held with non-NHS/non-public sector organisations are submitted quarterly by board members.

Board committees

NHS England’s board has delegated some of its duties and responsibilities to Board Committees. These Committees provide regular assurance to the board on their specific areas delegated to them and, by exception, escalate issues that merit full board discussion and decision. They are led by non-executive directors and include:

Audit and Risk Assurance Committee (ARAC)

The ARAC meets five times per year and reviews and monitors the integrity of the financial statements, financial and regulatory compliance, the systems of internal and control and the external and internal audit process.

Cyber Security and Risk Sub-Committee

The Cyber Security and Risk Sub-Committee is a sub-committee of ARAC, which will meet four times per year and forms a core part of NHS England’s internal control and risk management system, providing assurance to the Board, through ARAC, on cyber security and insider threats.

Data, Digital and Technology Committee

The Data, Digital and Technology Committee, which will meet six times per year, considers and makes recommendations on digital and technology strategy (including cyber strategy) to the NHS England Board and oversees implementation. It advises on development of data and technology architecture and assures the Board on discharge of data functions, including overseeing and scrutinising how the functions are exercised and the steps taken by NHS England to follow the Statutory Guidance and protect confidential information.

Quality Committee

The Quality Committee meets five times per year and objectively reviews quality, to ensure continued improvements to patient care, experience and safety. The Committee provides assurance that NHS England ensures continued improvements in quality of services and outcomes in relation to the safety of services, patient care and experience. Membership will include a number of patient and public voice members.

People and Remuneration Committee

The People and Remuneration Committee, which meets five times per year, oversees the delivery of the overall workforce strategy for the NHS, ensures there is a single coherent remuneration policy for NHS England and approves remuneration for senior executives, as well as overseeing appointment and remuneration matters for integrated care boards and trusts.

Nominations Committee

The Nominations Committee meets three times per year and oversees succession plans for the Board and senior management, Board composition and Board evaluation.

CFO Advisory Group

The CFO Advisory Group meets four times per year and provides advice to the Chief Financial Officer and other senior executives in carrying out their responsibilities in respect of significant financial matters, the central commercial function, estates and facilities and New Hospital Programme.