The IHM is the leading independent membership organisation for managers and leaders who commission, deliver and support health and care in the UK and across the world.

Our mission is to support your personal and professional development and to help you improve health and well-being for all through quality management, by connecting with other membership organisations and professional bodies to enable us all to get the very best out of our collective expertise and resources.

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EDITORIAL – 22nd May 2020


Allow me to introduce you to an acronym from the world of health and safety which helps staff to understand and design response to risk. It is ALARP – As Low As Reasonably Practicable. It is accepted that ‘reasonably’ is open to interpretation but the acronym and approach has stood for a considerable period of time.

I choose this as the topic for this week’s editorial because I am growing increasingly frustrated about testing – and the extent to which national intent is taking priority over local necessity.

In a country where we know there is a finite quantity of testing reagent available, I am struggling to understand the motivation for political targets of first 100,000 tests per day and now 200,000 tests.

If you are a manager working, for example, in a radiology department, your capacity to conduct CT tests is not limited merely by the availability of scanning machines. Right now it is also limited by an ability to abide by guidance relating to possible Covid19 contamination and the potential need to clean the machine after each scan. If you could test each patient scheduled for scanning on a particular day, you would know whether a deep clean after each scan was necessary – and for many / most it wouldn’t be. Alas, in the rush to fulfil a 100K per day national target, sensible scrutiny of when, where and why tests are required is over-ridden.

The target hitting mentality is a huge source of concern for many of you. 100,000 or 200,000 tests (or 25,000 track and trace contact workers) we know is arbitrary and doesn’t deliver on outcomes. The president of the Institute of Biomedical Science, Allan Wilson, has commented that knowing where, how and how often people will be tested is more vital than goal setting. He is right. And for those of you managing services in your health and social care environments, his words are even more adroit.

The next challenge facing us is how and when we start to open elective surgery units. Without testing based out of the hospital laboratories and subject to the turnaround speed they are capable of achieving, it is impossible to understand how elective activity can be quickly and effectively opened. The Royal College of Surgeons of England has issued guidance in respect of renewing elective surgery as follows: “Hospitals should know their diagnostic testing availability and develop clear policies for addressing testing requirements and frequency for staff and patients”. In other words, don’t restart elective surgery until you have a plan for testing locally.

the need to entrust local managers and staff with developing strategies and plans for risk reduction in respect of Covid19 extends to their being listened to in regards testing volume and focus. Whitehall (and the other devolved nation government seats) seems to be relishing its role as designer and broadcaster for pandemic instruction, but it is doing so in a manner which does not reflect the local realities and challenges faced. If we really want to get things moving and advance our health system whilst adopting an ALARP approach to risk, then the solutions rest locally – and not in politically expedient target setting based on national volume.

Do please write and tell me your own experiences of local testing availability and focus – jwilks@ihm.org.uk.

Stay safe, stay strong and thank you for the brilliant work you are each doing.

Jon Wilks

Chief Executive – IHM



Now is most definitely the time to become a member of the IHM and join our diverse and inclusive membership includes current and future managers from the NHS, social care, public health, private sector, military, charity and voluntary sectors, as well as a thriving overseas representation – across all management levels and disciplines in health and care.

As a member you will have access to exclusive resources which include webinars,  downloads, weekly newsletters, daily news bulletins and a whole lot more!

AND on top of all that we are now offering new members FREE IHM membership until 31st July 2020!  You will then be invited to renew your membership for the following 12 months at the reduced rate of £70 + VAT.  (This represents a saving of £60 on our normal annual renewal rate for full members).

To take advantage of this fabulous offer please click on the link below and enter the code IHM2020 in the box labelled ‘Corporate Access Code’.

But hurry as this offer will expire on 31st July 2020.

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Holding accurate and complete contact information for you will enable us to manage your membership efficiently and to provide you with the resources and services you need to be your best selves.

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During these very challenging times for the NHS  we recognise that there will be a need for managers and staff to be able to reach out to colleagues to chat/talk through the issues they are facing on a day to day basis.

The IHM WhatsApp Support Group is a buddying system which aims to help members do just that!

Please click here for more information!



The Institute of Healthcare Management is delighted to announce the launch of IHM Regional Hubs, a network of local level locations which will offer workshops, social events, presentations and meetings. As an IHM member you will exclusively be able to access such activity, designed to enormously boost the value and benefit which you receive from your membership subscription.

If you would like to learn more please CLICK HERE.


We think it is important that IHM members are identified as committed, ethical professionals, who bring to their work a strong sense of vocation and professionalism.

We, with the help of Sir David Dalton and others, have developed and launched the IHM Code of Practice, which is a requirement of membership and an obligation for all members. 

CLICK HERE to view the IHM ‘Code of Practice’ 



Here at the IHM we are proud to offer a range of personal development programmes, some formal, such as our IHM Fellowship Programme, and some informal such as our High Performance Leadership programme. 

We are constantly developing new programmes based on the needs of our members, such as our short Mentoring course which we will be announcing within the coming days. 

To find out more about the courses we currently offer please click here.