The Sir Peter Carr Award: inspiring the next generation of NHS leaders


The Sir Peter Carr Award is for clinicians and managers, designed to help and inspire the NHS leaders of tomorrow to improve services for patients.

Sir Peter Carr Award - winners announced

With over 90 applications, we can now announce that a consultant Ophthalmologist and an NHS manager have won a £30,000 award to invest in their professional development.

Who are the winners?

Dr Rachel Pilling, a Consultant Ophthalmologist, and Daniel Wadsworth, Deputy Head of Access at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, impressed judges with their project idea “15 seconds – 30 minutes”. This encourages NHS staff to complete a small task today, that might take 15 seconds but may save colleagues 30 minutes by avoiding further tasks down the line. The initiative aims to reduce frustration at work, increase job satisfaction and as a result improving patient experience

Jim Mackey, Chief Executive, NHS Improvement announces the runners up and winners of our Sir Peter Carr Award.

What is the award?

The Sir Peter Carr Award is a £30,000 award which will be made to a clinician and manager partnership (£15,000 each) to invest in their professional development over a year to support the delivery of a shared improvement objective. 

Both the winners and partnerships shortlisted for the award (up to five in total) will also receive access to a range of support including mentoring, networks, personal development and improvement skill-building and opportunities to attend events during the year. 

As part of this we also offered tickets to shortlisted pairs to attend the International Forum on Quality and Safety in Healthcare which took place in April. This is one of the world’s largest conferences for healthcare professionals committed to improving patient care and their safety.

Jim Mackey, Chief Executive, NHS Improvement discusses the Sir Peter Carr Award and how it will inspire others.

Why was the award created?

Sir Peter Carr retired from his position of NHS Trust Development Authority Chair in 2016 after over 25 years of distinguished service in the NHS in a range of non-executive roles at regional and national level. The award both acknowledges Sir Peter’s contribution and demonstrates the importance NHS Improvement attaches to investing in leadership for improvement, which was a key part of our national framework Developing People - Improving Care. This is an evidence based framework to guide action on improvement skill building, leadership development and talent management for people in NHS funded roles.

Who is the award for?

The award was opened to clinician and manager partnerships working in NHS trusts and foundation trusts in England who:

  • are operating at middle management level in clinical and managerial roles respectively (Agenda for Change Band 7 and above, or higher specialty training ST3 and above), with responsibilities for an improvement initiative they are leading together
  • have an interest in quality improvement as well as some experience of leading improvement work but may not have had significant formal quality improvement training 
  • are keen to take the next step in both their professional development and quality improvement knowledge to deliver an improvement initiative using leadership for improvement skills, using a quality improvement methodology within their organisation(s)

Sir Peter Carr: a pioneer within the NHS

Our award has been inspired by Sir Peter Carr who supported and fostered innovation in the NHS during his 25 years of service. His pioneering work made the NHS a better service for millions of patients who rely on it and tens of thousands of staff who work for it.

We wanted to recognise the enormous contribution that Sir Peter made to the NHS by helping the leaders of tomorrow make their difference. 

The award reinforces our commitment to the Developing People, Improving Care framework for leadership and improvement. The key principles of this, such as compassionate and inclusive leadership were central to Sir Peter’s philosophy and provide the context for judging the award.

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