It is my absolute pleasure to have officially joined HEE last week, after a long 6-month induction period. I would like to thank all of you for the fantastic welcome that I have received from HEE colleagues, as well as from stakeholders such as NHS England and NHS Improvement, trusts, regulators, and higher education institutions.
I would also like to thank Wendy, who has done a stellar job of leading HEE as Interim Chief Executive through a particularly challenging period. I certainly feel that I have hit the ground running and look forward to getting stuck in, and in particular, hearing from and getting to know as many colleagues across the health and care system as possible.
I am incredibly excited about the future of HEE and delighted that I have a part to play in shaping the organisation going forward. There is no doubt that we all have a busy time ahead and we will support patients, the NHS and learners to face the next Covid-19 surge with the same effort, commitment, cooperation, problem solving and flexibility as last time.
We recognise that this is a fast-moving environment and will keep reviewing what we can do to support learners to continue their education as much as possible and protect the graduate pipeline as the surge develops.
Covid-19 has certainly helped the NHS to embrace digital technology in the delivery of education, training and patient care. This week, at the NHS Providers virtual conference I spoke about what HEE is doing to take a lead on the role that digital technology plays in the delivery of health and care in the future and the knowledge and skills needed to work differently in the 21st century.
Following the findings and recommendations of the Topol Review, HEE’s role has taken a new focus on digital learning and development and awareness and readiness for the workforce and its leaders - these are key alongside all the traditional learning and development that HEE oversees already. Including this in current curricula becomes very important. And HEE’s role in bringing in the future digital workforce is vital too – the Topol Fellowships create clinical digital leaders of the future and we have also brought in digital apprenticeships and the blended nursing degree, for example.
So, what does that mean for the workforce? Digital skillsets and knowledge and opportunities will improve. The establishment of the NHS Digital Academy – part of the Digital Readiness programme – will mean that there is a contextualised home for all our digital learning and learning programmes providing the right learning at the right time for our people. The Yale leadership programme and Topol Fellowship programme – are all about building capacity for people to lead the digital agenda and make a difference for patients. This is the reason I am thrilled that HEE are also working with NHS Providers to deliver a development programme aimed at NHS boards. The NHS Providers digital board offer helps organisations wrestle with this to find the sweet spot – empowering staff and service users to speed up innovation and change safely, to delegate decision-making and simultaneously help to make the NHS the Best Place to Work.
Over the coming weeks and months, I will share with you, my priorities and progress during my first 100 days in post (#First100days). My number 1 priority as I join HEE is looking after our people, and I am highly committed to making HEE and the NHS the Best Place to Work. I am confident that together, we can make this a reality and with that, we will produce the best possible outcomes for students and trainees, and ultimately for people in England.
Dr Navina Evans
Health Education England
This Page was last updated on: 9 October 2020