What is the National Guardian's Office?

The National Guardian’s Office and the role of the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian were created in response to recommendations made in Sir Robert Francis QC’s report “The Freedom to Speak Up” (2015).

These recommendations were made as Sir Robert found that NHS culture did not always encourage or support workers to speak up, and that patients and workers suffered as a result.

The office leads, trains and supports a network of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians in England and conducts case reviews of organisations when it appears that speaking up has not been handled according to best practice.

There are over 700 guardians in NHS and independent sector organisations, national bodies and elsewhere that ensure workers can speak up about any issues impacting on their ability to do their job. The National Guardian’s Office also provides challenge and learning to the healthcare system as a whole as part of its remit.

Dr Jayne Chidgey-Clark

About the National Guardian

Dr Jayne Chidgey-Clark

Dr Chidgey-Clark is a registered nurse with more than 30 years’ experience in the NHS, higher education, voluntary and private sectors. Most recently she was a non-executive director at NHS Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group where she was a Freedom to Speak Up Guardian.

She is the Independent Chair for the Oxfordshire Safeguarding Adults Board. She also worked with the NHS England New Care Models Programme for three years as a Clinical Associate and has been working as a consultant and coach with and in the NHS since March 2015. Her specialist clinical area is end of life care in which she was awarded her PhD.

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