Independent report

Health and social care review: leadership for a collaborative and inclusive future

Independent report from General Sir Gordon Messenger and Dame Linda Pollard into leadership across health and social care in England.

Applies to England



In October 2021 the government announced a review into leadership across health and social care, led by former Vice Chief of the Defence Staff General Sir Gordon Messenger and supported by Dame Linda Pollard, Chair of Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust.

As outlined in the terms of reference, the review focused on the best ways to strengthen leadership and management across health and with its key interfaces with adult social care in England. Following extensive stakeholder engagement, the review has now completed with the following 7 recommendations:

  1. Targeted interventions on collaborative leadership and organisational values
  2. Positive equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) action
  3. Consistent management standards delivered through accredited training
  4. A simplified, standard appraisal system for the NHS
  5. A new career and talent management function for managers
  6. Effective recruitment and development of non-executive directors (NEDs)
  7. Encouraging top talent into challenged parts of the system

All 7 recommendations have been accepted by the government and publication of the report will be followed by a plan committing to implementing the recommendations.

Published 8 June 2022