In February 2020 the government health minister, Nadine Dorries MP, announced that NHS England and NHS Improvement were commissioning an independent investigation into the maternity and neonatal services provided by East Kent University NHS Foundation Trust. The investigation will be led by Dr Bill Kirkup.
The Trust has welcomed this independent investigation and has promised that it will do everything in its power to assist and support Dr Kirkup and his team.
A panel of clinical experts has been appointed to assist Dr Kirkup and an investigation support team is being put in place. The support team will be led by Mr Ken Sutton, Secretary to the investigation, and his assistant, Ann Ridley, both of whom have worked with Dr Kirkup previously.
Details of the panel and support team are available on the investigation's website.
The Terms of Reference for the investigation were published in Parliament on 11 March 2021 and can be found on the investigations' website.
The Terms of Reference indicate that in addition to drawing upon the experience of families, medical records and key interviews, the investigation will also take account of the findings contained in the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) review commissioned by the Trust in 2014. As part of our commitment to openness and transparency about the improvements we are making to our maternity service, we are publishing the full RCPCH review here.