Advisors brought in to assist inquiry into criminal breast surgeon

Ian Paterson was jailed for 10 years after being found guilty of 17 counts of wounding with intent Credit: PA

Three independent advisors have been appointed to assist the inquiry into how a breast surgeon was able to carry out unnecessary operations on patients in the West Midlands.

Ian Paterson is serving a 20 year sentence for wounding offences on ten patients in the private sector. He was also found to be carrying out a rogue form of mastectomy on the NHS, where patients were left with an increased risk of their breast cancer returning.

Karen Harrowing, Alex Kafetz and Stephen Collier will be working with the Inquiry to develop recommendations on what needs to happen to improve safety and quality of care for patients.

The Bishop of Norwich, Graham James, who is leading the Paterson Inquiry said: "They bring with them a wealth of experience and knowledge of both the independent sector and NHS, and across the breadth of our Terms of Reference."

Karen Harrowing has nearly forty years’ experience in both NHS and independent hospital practice. She was formerly Group Quality Systems Director and Group Chief Pharmacist for Nuffield Health and has a particular expertise in governance in the Independent Sector.

Alex Kafetz is Managing Director at ZPB Associates and is a leading thinker on healthcare data, transparency and technology. Alex is a trained data analyst with experience working with the NHS and independent sector.

Stephen Collier has extensive experience of senior management and governance across private and public health sectors, both nationally and internationally. Stephen is currently a non-executive director for St George’s University Hospitals NHSFoundation Trust, Chair of NHS Professionals, and has previously held the position of Group Chief Executive for BMI Healthcare.

A number of medical professionals will also be appointed in the new year to assist the Inquiry on the clinical matters. They are likely to be breast surgeons, breast nurses and those who have clinical expertise.

The Inquiry, which began at the start of 2018 is expected to report back with recommendations to the Government in the summer of 2019.