The Team

Richard S Steyn MS FRCSEd(C-Th) FIMCRCSEd MRCGP DRCOG qualified as a Doctor from Aberdeen University in 1984. After completing vocational training in rural general practice (Taynuilt Medical Practice) he returned to surgical training in Aberdeen, Liverpool, Manchester and Birmingham. In August 1999, he was appointed Consultant Thoracic Surgeon at the Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. He was appointed clinical director for the Regional Department of Thoracic Surgery (January 2010) and the Respiratory Medicine Department (November 2010). In 2013 he demitted these roles and was appointed as an Associate Medical Director – Surgery and in addition commenced as clinical lead for the Surgical Reconfiguration initiative. More recently (May 2015) he has taken on an Interim role as Associate Medical Director for Solihull Hospital. His main clinical interests are surgery for adult pulmonary disease, cardiothoracic trauma and pectus deformity. He is also an active pre-hospital doctor and Medical Incident Officer with West Midlands Ambulance Service and was awarded the Queen’s Golden and Diamond Jubilee Medals for his services. He is Immediate Past Chairman of the British Association for Immediate Care (BASICS).

He was involved in the cancer services collaborative from Phase I as a tumour specific lead (lung) and in Phase II as a regional clinical lead. He has led several initiatives including patient-led follow-up and taping patient consultations. His main interest however has been researching healthcare processes with particular emphasis on understanding the effects of variation and flow on the management of demand and capacity and the resulting waiting lists. He has developed several computer models to facilitate the understanding and teaching of the concepts that must be addressed to allow effective use of healthcare resources. Of course technical knowledge is only one half of the equation and Richard has become just as interested in how to manage the human dimensions of change.

He was appointed National Clinical Lead Demand, Capacity & Patient Flow with the NHS Modernisation Agency in December 2001 and National Clinical Lead Cancer Modernisation in March 2003, subsequently becoming a National Cancer Adviser until the restructuring of the NHS and the creation of NHS England. He also is an Honorary Associate Professor with the University of Warwick.

Increasingly he is lecturing and consulting on healthcare process design and demonstrating these models both within the UK and internationally to facilitate the understanding of demand and capacity management and planning, queuing theory, theory of constraints and lean thinking as it relates to healthcare.

Kate Silvester BSc MBA FRCOphth originally trained and practised as an ophthalmologist. In 1994 she retrained as a manufacturing systems engineer with Lucas Industries.  Kate spent seven years in management consultancy transferring manufacturing principles to service industries such as banking, airlines and healthcare.  In 1999 she rejoined the NHS as a programme manager for the Cancer Service Collaborative.  Kate joined the NHS Modernisation Agency in April 2001 and worked on many NHS redesign programmes. Subsequently Kate developed the Osprey program (a strategic health authority sponsored initiative training experienced healthcare staff in the skills and techniques required to engineer and design healthcare processes. Kate’s specific areas of expertise are in the design and management of organisational systems to improve patient flow across whole healthcare systems and matching the variability in demand and capacity to eliminate queues. Kate has been appointed as an Honorary Senior Lecturer with the University of Warwick. Currently she is working with the Health Foundation.

Paul Walley … is an Associate Professor with the University of Warwick Business School and has extensive experience of operations management and systems improvement within the UK healhcare system. His main role has been to analyse procedures and to recommend ways of improving the process design. Paul’s work within emergency care produced ground-breaking analysis of demand for emergency care and recmmendations of how this demand should be managed and divided into process streams. The early work resulting in large improvements in waiting times, especially for minor patient treatment. This approach was adopted by the emergency Services Collaborative. More recently, Paul has been working to set up a Centre for Clinical Systems Improvement jointly with Warwick Medical School.

Matthew Cooke … is Professor of Emergency Medicine at Warwick Medical School and Heart of England NHS Foundation Trust. His research interests include clinical systems improvement, lean healthcare and systems approaches to clinical improvement. This interest commenced from work he undertook around emergency care reforms as the Department of Health’s emergency medicine advisor. He is leading a project to develop a national curriculum in clinical systems improvement and developing learning modules in this area at all levels. He has advised both nationally and internationally on reconfiguring emergency care systems. He has been appointed National Clincial Director for Emergency and Unscheduled Care at the Department of Health

Richard Lendon MBChB FRACGP qualified from the University of Birmingham Medical School in 1989. From 1991-1996 he lived in Australia, and worked to registrar level in Paediatrics and Emergency Medicine. He completed his GP training and subsequently became a partner in a large practice in Coffs Harbour, NSW. After retuirning to England, he was a partner in General Practice for 5 years. In 2002, Richard joined the NHS Modernisation Agency on a full-time basis. As part of the Innovation and Knowledge Group and along with collegaues Kate Silvester and Richard Steyn, he has pioneered the clincial systems improvement work examining the issue of patient flow across healthcare systems. From April 2003 he was instrumental in introducing this approach across healthcare in England in conjunction with the Improvement Partnership For Hospitals. He also led the Real Measurement for Real Improvement program. Richard has since returned to promoting service improvement within primary care.

And of course … a cast of thousands within UK hospitals, primary care and also healthcare services abroad.