The decision-making heart of NHS Bexley Clinical Commissioning Group comprises of 13 strong voting members including a GP chair, chief clinical officer, chief financial officer, lay members, an acute doctor, nurse and six GP practice representatives. The governing body also includes three non-voting members including two of the CCGs directors and the patient council vice-chair.
The borough has been divided into three ‘localities’, which each have two GP representatives on the governing body. The locality representatives are responsible for ensuring that local health needs are met within their own geographical areas.
GPs are the core members of the CCG. There are six GPs on the governing body to ensure their clinicians have a strong voice.
The governing body meets in public every two months. Its members also sit on a number of associated panels including the health and wellbeing board.
Dr Nikita Kanani, chief clinical officer
Up until March 2017, Dr Kanani was the CCG's chair and is now the CCG's chief clinical officer.
Nikita is a GP in Welling and is NHS Bexley CCG's chair. She is passionate about improving service provision and access in the NHS.
Dr Kanani has had a vast portfolio career; outside of the CCG she was previously the quality lead for the Faculty of Medical Leadership and Management, co-chair of The Network (an online community connecting almost 3000 healthcare professionals to improve the quality of care in the UK and beyond) and an executive board member of the National Association of Primary Care and an RCGP clinical commissioning champion.
Nikita regularly presents at national and international conferences on opportunities and collaborations in the new NHS and has been named as a ‘top up and coming GP’ by Pulse Magazine in 2012 and 2013. In December 2013, Nikita was named by HSJ magazine as a ‘rising star’, an award which celebrates the healthcare leaders of tomorrow and influencers of today.
With her astrophysicist sister, she set up STEMMsisters, an enterprise which aims to inspire and empower people from disadvantaged backgrounds to study ‘STEMM’ subjects and access mentoring and coaching opportunities.
Dr Sid Deshmukh, chair, locality lead (Frognal) and Caldicott guardian
Dr Sid Deshmukh has been a GP since 2002 and is senior partner of Sidcup Medical Centre.
As an elected locality lead, Sid’s aims for the CCG include providing good, effective information to GPs. He believes relevant, timely and accessible information on all patient activity will create a revolution in healthcare. He is also the governing body's clinical vice chair.
Sid is the clinical lead for IT, leading key programmes of work such as data sharing programmes.
Sid has worked closely with stakeholders to establish a successful nursing home network and is also the clinical lead for dementia.
Dr Varun Bhalla, locality lead (North Bexley)
Dr Varun Bhalla has been a partner at Belvedere Medical Centre in Bexleyheath for more than 20 years. Varun has also worked as a police surgeon and occupational medical adviser for London Borough of Greenwich.
As an elected locality lead, Varun is keen to focus on improving the quality and the efficiency of health services.
Dr Jhumur Moir - locality lead (Clocktower)
Dr Moir has been a partner at the Westwood Surgery in Welling for five years. Her primary care interests include women’s health (including contraception and menopause), diabetes, palliative care and training.
At the CCG, Dr Moir’s areas of responsibility include being the clinical lead for diabetes and the Clocktower locality lead.
Dr Moir is also a GP trainer and appraiser and an out-of-hours GP.
Lisa Wilson – Clocktower locality representative
Lisa Wilson is the practice manager at the Albion Surgery in Bexleyheath. The surgery cares for more than 14,000 Bexley patients.
Having worked in the practice for many years, Lisa has a sound understanding the workings of a busy GP practice.
Lisa is a practice representative on the CCG’s primary care development group, which meets every fortnight to help develop and enhance the services provided by all GP practices across the borough. Representatives on the group take forward pilot projects and implement new innovative systems to help enhance services provided by Bexley practices.
Dr Sonia Khanna-Deshmukh – locality representative (Frognal locality)
Dr Sonia Khanna-Deshmukh has been working at Sidcup Medical Centre as a sessional GP since August 2010. She is a board member of the South London Faculty (SLF) at the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) and has been an Education and Support Event tutor for SLF RCGP.
Recently appointed as a GP appraiser for south London, Dr Khanna-Deshmukh is committed to teaching and helping others to build on their knowledge to encourage professional development. She arranges local teaching events for GPs and is also training to become a GP trainer.
Keen to enhance the quality of local healthcare as a governing body member, Dr Khanna-Deshmukh is a member of the CCGs quality and safety sub-committee, feeding into the governing body meetings.
Until July 2014, Sonia was a co-opted member of Bexley’s Local Medical Committee, representing sessional GPs.
As well as being a locality representative for NHS Bexley CCG, Sonia is also a clinical lead for the NHS 111 service and for urgent and unscheduled care.
When members decided to re-procure urgent and unscheduled care services in Bexley, Dr Khanna-Deshmukh was keen to help redesign fragmented services to provide a more holistic package of care for patients, reduce unnecessary accident and emergency attendances and hospital admissions.
Working alongside Dr Varun Bhalla, Sonia helped to develop clinical elements of the urgent and unscheduled care service specification and was also part of the tender evaluation process. Urgent and unscheduled care services were re-procured in 2014 and Dr Khanna-Deshmukh continues to contract manage, support and monitor the programme.
With a keen interest in medication prescribing and reducing risk of prescribing errors, Dr Khanna-Deshmukh also supports the CCGs medicines management sub-committee, a sub-group of the governing body.
Tina Khanna – locality representative (North Bexley)
Tina has been a practice manager at Slade Green Medical Centre and a locality communication lead – responsible for relaying important messages to key practices in the north of the borough – since 2007. Prior to working in Bexley, Tina was a personal assistant to the head of nursing at Kings College Hospital.
Having worked in both primary and secondary care and closely with commissioners, Tina has a broad understanding of the health system and the needs of patients. She also has a good rapport with healthcare staff, patients and GPs in Bexley and neighbouring boroughs.
Tina is keen to use her frontline experience of working in primary care to further improve local services for those working in the system, as well as local residents. As part of this ambition, Tina has also been helping to lead a ‘future models’ work stream in Bexley, which is enabling GPs and practice staff to explore new models of working to meet patient needs of the future. In particular, Tina is working in partnership with practice managers in North Bexley to see how resources such as HR, IT, bulk buying and organisational development can be better co-ordinated between practices.
Tina is also fluent in Punjabi and Hindi.
Theresa Osborne, chief operating officer and chief financial officer
Theresa has spent 20 years working with the NHS across south-east London and previous roles included, the director of finance at Bexley Care Trust, head of performance at NHS London and director of finance of the South East London Workforce Development Confederation.
Theresa is responsible for providing strategic advice to the governing body and CCG on all aspects of financial strategy and financial management, as well as ensuring effective, efficient and economic use of its financial allocation and delivery of all financial targets.
Neil Ross - lay member
Neil joined the CCG's governing body in January 2017. He works as a barrister prosecuting and defending in criminal and regulatory matters, with experience in dealing with fraud and corruption in health care. He has served as a elected member of the General Council of the Bar and the executive committee of the Criminal Bar Association. Neil has a particular interest in mental health, having read psychology at university. In his spare time, Neil is the player manager of a Sunday league football team.
Paul Cutler – patient and public lay member
Paul Cutler is an experienced consultant, trainer and facilitator who specialises in participation, public engagement and communications. He works via his own consultancy organisation for a variety of organisations in the private, public and voluntary sectors across England. His work aims to help organisations build strong and effective relationships with service users, community groups and stakeholders to positively influence policy and practice.
He is currently an associate of the National Children’s Bureau, the Centre for Public Scrutiny and CAN-Invest. He has a background in social work and was formerly a non-executive director for the NHS in Bexley and south-east London. He is passionate about the NHS and believes that patients, carers and family members have a powerful contribution to make through their expertise, knowledge and local networks. Over the last 25 years he has collected many stories and examples of how service users and patients can drive innovation and impact through creative partnerships with organisations.
Paul has lived in the borough of Bexley for more than 15 years and has a strong commitment to the local community.
Keith Wood, lay member (governance)
Keith is a chartered accountant who achieved partner status in his professional career before appointments as a director of finance in both the private sector and latterly the NHS. He served as vice chair of Bexley Care Trust until its dissolution on 31 March 2013, having previously held appointments as a non-executive director and audit committee chair in a number of local NHS bodies. Keith has also been a treasurer/trustee of health related charities over the last 12 years.
Mary Currie, nurse
Mary began her career in the NHS 30 years ago, training as a registered nurse in London and qualifying in 1986. Since then she has worked as a qualified nurse across the majority of acute hospital specialties, and was appointed to one of the early wave nurse consultant roles, specialising in cardiology at Bromley Hospitals NHS Trust. Additionally, through completing training in non-invasive cardiac diagnostic testing, she was the first nurse in the country to gain British Society of Echocardiography Adult Accreditation.
Mary undertook an MBA and in 2005 was appointed to the role of director of the cardiac network in south-east London and successfully led on a range of clinical pathway transformations.
Over the last 10 years she has held a number of director level posts in the NHS, with portfolios that have spanned across governance, performance, strategy and transformation. Her most recent role was director of clinical services for a commissioning support unit, where she provided nursing leadership at an executive level and her portfolio included Continuing Healthcare and Medicines Management, supporting nine CCGs across Essex and Hertfordshire.
Mary has worked at national level at the Department of Health and recently completed a secondment at the Care Quality Commission, where she contributed to a range of hospital inspections reviewing quality, governance and patient safety.
Mary joined the CCG’s governing body on 1 May 2015.
Dr Koteshwara Muralidhara, secondary care specialist
Dr Koteshwara Muralidhara joined the CCG’s governing body as the secondary care doctor in July 2016.
Dr Koteshwara Muralidhara is a consultant physician in endocrinology and diabetes at London Northwest Heathcare NHS Trust. His primary care interests include type one diabetes, diabetes care for the young and integrated care diabetes.
Sarah Valentine, director of commissioning
Sarah is responsible for the group’s commissioning strategy, Quality, Innovation, Productivity and Prevention (QIPP) programme and transformation plans.
She previously worked as director of commissioning at NHS Hastings and Rother Primary Care Trust. This included a secondment as interim director of service delivery and development at NHS Quality Works.
Lionel Eastmond – Patient Council representative
Lionel is retired and has a strong community spirit and great interest in serving the local population of Bexley. He represents service users on a number of committee’s and groups including, the Crayford Community Forum and Crayford Town Surgery Patient Participation Group.
Lionel is committed to public service and the NHS. As a patient and community representative, Lionel has received good treatment from the NHS but believes services must continuously improve and reflect the patient voice. As a governing body member, Lionel believes he can make a valuable contribution reflecting the experiences of patients in Bexley.