NHS Resolution appoints new Director of Safety and Learning

Date published:

NHS Resolution announces today, 28 July 2023, the appointment of Megan Bidder as the organisation’s new Director of Safety and Learning. Her appointment follows an open and rigorous recruitment process, which assessed candidates across a range of criteria, including their knowledge, experience and understanding of safety-related matters in the NHS. Through this process we have appointed a candidate who brings deep expertise in health-related policy plus her experience of working closely with clinical leaders and senior policy-makers.

Megan Bidder

Megan joins NHS Resolution from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), where as Deputy Director Adult Social Care she led a policy programme to drive greater choice and further the integration of adult social care services. Megan has 14 years of experience at the interface of health and social policy-making, and has been a Senior Civil Servant in three government departments.  As Head of Maternity Litigation Policy at DHSC she liaised closely with national clinical leads and the royal colleges to develop and advise ministers on options to improve maternity safety and foster a no-blame culture.

Megan’s appointment follows the announcement that NHS Resolution’s current Director of Safety and Learning, Dr Denise Chaffer, will retire from the NHS after 47 years’ service, the past eight years of which have been with NHS Resolution. Megan will take up her new position on 1 October 2023 and Denise will begin her retirement on 13 November 2023, allowing for a managed handover in the autumn.

Megan’s skills and experience will complement the clinical skills we have available to us in the wider Safety and Learning team at NHS Resolution. A particular strength of Megan’s is her experience of working closely with clinicians. She is known for being a collaborative and engaging leader who is committed to driving social change through securing improvements in health, equality and quality of life. Among her previous roles at DHSC was as Head of Maternity Litigation Policy, where she led the development of a new policy programme, working closely with the Independent Chairs of the National Maternity Review to turn their recommendations into workable policy solutions. Megan also led a multi-disciplinary team to develop a state indemnity scheme for General Practice, working closely with the chairs of royal colleges, the British Medical Association and the CEOs of the medical defence organisations.

Megan started her career via Civil Service Fast Stream in 2010, initially based at the Home Office, she has since worked in leadership roles at Department for Education and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with a focus on policy improvements which support better outcomes in health and quality of life.

In her new role at NHS Resolution, Megan will lead the Safety and Learning team in improving the response to harm in the NHS, working in partnership with patients, families and carers, together with staff, in the prevention of harm, using NHS Resolution’s data to share insights across the health service.

I am delighted that Megan is joining us as our next Director of Safety and Learning. This is a critical time for the NHS, in terms of delivering safe care for patients and staff. I look forward to working closely with Megan as she takes forward our strategic aims around delivering fair resolution, wherever possible keeping patients and staff out of formal legal processes to minimise distress and cost, and importantly collaborating with our system partners to improve maternity outcomes.

I would also like to pay tribute to our outgoing Director of Safety and Learning, Dr Denise Chaffer, for her tireless work over the past eight years at NHS Resolution in introducing measures to improve patient safety, in particular the Maternity Incentive Scheme and Early Notification Scheme, and her contributions to promoting a just and learning culture in the NHS, working closely with our legal and finance experts, and our system partners.

Helen Vernon, Chief Executive of NHS Resolution

I am very excited to be joining NHS Resolution to lead the Safety and Learning service at this important time for the NHS, and look forward to bringing together key partners to share expertise, build on mutual commitments to improve patient safety, and support system learning to improve outcomes and experience of patients and staff. I look forward to working with and learning from colleagues across NHS Resolution, system partners, patients and families, to further the important work established by Denise and her team.

Megan Bidder