Sir Robert Francis QC has announced his intention to step down earlier than planned. He will leave in November 2022 after three years as Chair of Healthwatch England.

Healthwatch England is the national consumer champion for health and social care. It also supports local Healthwatch across England, including Healthwatch Bucks.

Announcing his retirement, Sir Robert Francis QC said:

It has been a privilege to serve on the CQC Board and as Chair of Healthwatch England. This unique position has enabled me to raise the issues which really matter to patients, service users and those close to them.

In his resignation letter to Sajid Javid, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sir Robert also expressed his concern about the decreases in funding for Healthwatch nationally and locally.

If I have one regret about my time as Chair, it is that we have been unable as yet to find a way of reversing the alarming decline in the resources available to Healthwatch – I am afraid there is a growing risk the network will be unable to fulfil its vital role unless urgent attention is paid to this issue.

We at Healthwatch Bucks thank Sir Robert for his service and share his concerns about the reduction in funding over the years.

Published on 11 May

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