Joint Chair appointed for Dorset County Hospital and Dorset HealthCare

14th April 2023

Dorset County Hospital and Dorset HealthCare have appointed David Clayton-Smith as their new Joint Chair.

David was appointed following a rigorous selection process led by the governors at both trusts, which included stakeholder sessions with staff, patients, carers, members of both trusts’ boards and partner organisations in Dorset.

David is a vastly experienced chair and non-executive director, having spent the last 15 years working in a broad range of non-executive roles in both the public and private sectors, most recently focusing heavily on health.

David has held non-executive director roles at Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust and has been Chair at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, as well as the NHS Sussex and NHS Surrey Primary Care Trusts.

From 2019-22, David was Independent Chair at the Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire West Integrated Care System. He was also an Independent Chair at Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust. David’s executive career was spent in marketing roles across the retail and hospitality sector.

The two trust boards agreed in September to appoint a joint chief executive and joint chair to help improve the delivery of care to local communities by simplifying decision-making, increasing integration and improving quality. Matthew Bryant started in his role as the first joint Chief Executive for the two trusts earlier this month.

Shared leadership for the two trusts will allow the development of a clear common purpose and innovative solutions for current challenges, with a focus on:

  • prevention of ill health
  • tackling health inequalities
  • better integration between physical and mental health
  • joined-up workforce planning and development.

David will begin his new role in May when Mark Addison at Dorset County Hospital and Andy Willis at Dorset HealthCare complete their terms of office as chairs.

David said: “I am delighted to be taking on this new joint role across Dorset County Hospital and Dorset HealthCare at such a pivotal moment in their collaboration.

“By working together more closely at a clinical, operational and strategic level we can do much to make both trusts great places to work and improve services and outcomes for the population we serve.”


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