Valerie Asks a Health Question on Walsall Manor

At Health Questions on Tuesday 14 June 2022 I raised the leadership arrangements at Walsall Manor Hospital, which continues to have a joint Chair and a now permanent “Group CEO” with Wolverhampton NHS Trust. I asked the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care:

“I have already raised the issue of the governance at Walsall Manor Hospital. I welcome the Messenger-Pollard review— the Secretary of State will know that there is also a report called “The snowy white peaks of the NHS”, which says roughly the same thing — but I have been fobbed off because the leadership at Walsall and Wolverhampton remains the same. Could he look into why Walsall Manor should not have its own chief executive?”

The Messenger-Pollard Review into NHS leadership, ‘Leadership for a collaborative and inclusive future’, was published on 8 June 2022. The recommendations of the Review include a new career and talent management team at NHS regional offices to oversee career progression, and giving greater weight to behaviour during staff appraisals. It is essential that the Manor has an independent Chief Executive who can fully commit their focus to Walsall, and whose sole responsibility is improving outcomes for patients here.

In his response the Secretary of State for Health said: ‘These are important issues, and I have discussed this with the right hon. Lady. I will take another look at the management of Walsall Manor.” I am pleased that the Secretary of State will look again at these issues. There is more than enough talent in Walsall to find an independent Chief Executive who will fight for the Manor.