Jim Easton is the managing director of healthcare at private health provider Care UK. He is a former NHS official.
Easton's healthcare career began in the learning disabilities sector and he has worked in most area of healthcare over the years. Other roles at the NHS have included chief executive of the NHS South Central Strategic Health Authority, CEO of York Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, national director of transformation at the NHS Commissioning Board and national director for improvement and efficiency at the Department of Health.
Joins private health sector
- 'Care UK also bagged Jim Easton, one of a handful of senior health officials to push through the Coalition’s controversial reforms, and designer of the troubled 111 helpline contract (which continues to be criticised for poorly trained staff). Weeks after Easton joined Care UK, they bought up Harmoni - the firm that had beaten them to be the main private 111 provider. Following the withdrawal of NHS Direct who said the prices set out in the contract were "unsustainably" low, Care UK are now the key player in this particular out of hours healthcare "market"’.
Dalton review panel and potential breach of ACOBA advice
Easton, and others with private healthcare interests, advised the 2014 Dalton review - 'a government-commissioned report which last year concluded that private companies could oversee management of NHS hospitals'. The report claimed members were advising 'in a personal capacity, rather than as representatives of their organisations', but documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act revealed Easton was representing the NHS Partners Network, the UK’s primary lobbying group for the private healthcare sector. Easton was contacted by the Guardian, where he denied that he had 'breached rules [imposed on him by ACOBA when he left the NHS to join Care UK] preventing him from lobbying the government for two years'.
- Tamasin Cave, The privatising cabal at the heart of our NHS Spinwatch, 1 April 2015.
- Care UK Care UK confirms appointment of Jim Easton, 19 November 2012, accessed 9 April 2015.
- Care UK Jim Easton, accessed 9 April 2015.
- NHS England Jim Easton steps down as NHS Commissioning Board National Director: Transformation, 20 November 2012, accessed 9 April 2015.
- Tamasin Cave The privatising cabal at the heart of our NHS Spinwatch, 1 April 2015, accessed 9 April 2015.
- David Pegg Private health lobby advised on NHS privatisation review Guardian, 5 July 2015, accessed 6 July 2015.