Interview with the Executive Director

Simon Shepherd

Simon Shepherd

Executive Director,
BMI The Alexandra Hospital

The significant financial investment we are making at the hospital over the coming months shows just how much BMI believes in the excellent care provided at The Alexandra Hospital.

Simon, can you tell us a little about yourself and your background?

I grew up in Gloucestershire and after a degree in Modern History and Economics at Oxford University, I began life in the retail side of the oil industry.

Following this, I worked for 10 years in the drinks business and I have now been in senior leadership roles in healthcare for 15 years.

I am married to Sylvia, a lawyer, and we have two grown up children who live in London.

What was it about BMI Healthcare that made you join The Alexandra Hospital team?

Throughout my time in the industry I was aware of The Alex and its reputation as the pre-eminent private hospital in the North West.

It was a privilege to be given the opportunity to lead the hospital and its team at this very exciting time for healthcare.

We are now the largest private hospital outside of London

The Alexandra Hospital is a significant local landmark which opened in 1981, what is its interesting history?

The hospital holds a very special place in the hearts of the community and those who come here for consultations or treatment.

35 years of caringClearly, some of that is because of the excellent medical care it has provided over the last 35 years but I think it’s also because the hospital is regarded as ‘family’ by local people, its staff, patients and their families.

The hospital was built on what was quite rural land at the time, which was bought from the grandson of Agatha Christie in fact! It was built in record time – from spade to scalpel in just a year and at the time, it was the UK’s largest private hospital and cost a modest £7m to build.

We are now the largest private hospital outside of London and provide some of the most complex, cutting edge medical care available.

The significant financial investment we are making over the coming months shows just how much BMI believes in the excellent care provided at The Alexandra Hospital.

Can you tell us more about the investment?

The hospital has had consistent investment since it opened 35 years ago and I was very impressed by the facilities that I found here when I arrived.

Our £8 million programme for 2016/17, supported by the Board at BMI includes a new hybrid cath lab, a second MRI scanner, additional car parking, and a complete overhaul of the outpatients and reception, demonstrates the fantastic confidence that they have in the team.

Tell us about your involvement in the local community?

In May 2016, a team of us took part in the Great Manchester Run which was a fantastic day engaging with local runners and supporters and earlier this year, we launched a Facebook and Twitter account for the hospital to reach out to the local community.

We are also delighted to work in partnership with Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce.

Being a Patron enables us to engage with local businesses and explain the importance of our role in the local healthcare economy.

As well as this, we recently became the official healthcare partner for Sale Sharks for the coming season – exciting times at The Alex!

If we were having this conversation a year from now celebrating success, what do you hope we would have achieved in that time?

I would hope to see continued progress in all the areas that we are working on now, ensuring that our patients and consultants have an outstanding experience when they come to The Alex.

Who do you admire in business?

Truly outstanding leaders who can keep the businesses that they run focused on what is really important. In our case, this is making sure that we put patients at the centre of everything we do.

Thanks for your time Simon, do you have a final thought to share with the people of Manchester and Cheshire?

The Alex is unlike any other private hospital; we have a range of facilities that are unrivalled by other private healthcare providers in the North West, and a team of outstanding consultants and staff that make me constantly proud to be the Executive Director here.

BMI The Alexandra Hospital offer a wide range of treatments and facilities including orthopaedicscosmetic surgery, cardiology and imaging services (CT & MRI scans). You can find their full list of hospital services here.

Simon Shepherd