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Dr Michael Dixon to stand down as chairman of the NHS Alliance

Dr Michael Dixon to stand down as chairman of the NHS Alliance

Dr Michael Dixon, a practising GP in Cullompton, Devon is to retire as chairman of NHS Alliance, a post he has held for 18 years, at the end of this year
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Dr Michael Dixon, a practising GP in Cullompton, Devon is to retire as chairman of NHS Alliance, a post he has held for 18 years, at the end of this year.

He says that following his departure the NHS Alliance, set up in 1998, will become a "virtual organisation with light-touch governance but firm direction, harnessing digital and social media, and based on crowd-sourcing principles of ‘followship’ rather than restrictive membership".

“The NHS is transforming itself at an unprecedented pace and scale, and NHS Alliance has been doing the same. I believe the time for single-focus organisations representing discrete parts of the system has gone. It’s not about ‘hospitals’ or ‘primary care’ anymore, nor about siloed membership or representation. NHS Alliance has never shied away from disruptive innovation, but formal structures and fanfare conferences no longer feel relevant," he says.

He also criticised those in the NHS who "are more concerned about protecting their own interests". 

“Eighteen years is as long as any chair should serve. When we first founded NHS Alliance, we agreed that every conversation should be about how we could improve patient and community care and health. We didn’t waste time discussing abstract ideas and that may be because we were all frontline clinicians, impatient and wanting to make a difference. I had assumed these attitudes were rife throughout the health service but have found that too many people are more concerned about protecting their own interests and the status quo. I believe that NHS Alliance is one of the few true champions of the NHS," he says.

Rick Stern, chief executive, NHS Alliance says: “Michael has been an inspirational leader. Never afraid to challenge and disrupt in the interests of patients, doctors, nurses and the wider body of health professionals in primary care, he has left an extraordinary legacy. Many of us joined NHS Alliance because of Michael, drawing us in with his warmth and humour. 

"He is brilliant at connecting with people and he knows how to use the practical concerns of front line practitioners to shape and influence policy at the highest levels. We will miss him greatly, but we are both proud to have attracted a new cohort of inspirational leaders, and now look forward to supporting their collective vision.” 

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