Robert Ede

Robert Ede
Robert was Head of Health and Social Care at Policy Exchange. Since joining in 2020, Robert has published research on general practice, elective care, clinical research, specialised commissioning, vaccinations and ministerial oversight. Robert is a healthcare policy specialist, and a commentator on issues related to the NHS and social care in the national and trade media. He was the Prize Director for the Wolfson Economics Prize 2021, on the subject of hospital planning and design. Robert has degrees from the University of Oxford and the University of Exeter. In his spare time Robert sits on the advisory board of his local Healthwatch.

Related Publications

A Fresh Shot

  Download Publication   Online Reader The UK has a strong pedigree in vaccines – from the first smallpox vaccine developed by Edward Jenner to the team at Oxford University behind one of the first COVID-19 vaccines.  Yet uptake of Covid and flu jabs has declined in the past twelve months, risking a knock-on effect for the healthcare system as a whole, meaning busier A&E departments and longer backlogs for routine […]

NHS Capital and Infrastructure

  Download Publication   Online Reader This briefing, prepared in partnership with the Nuffield Trust, sets out considerations for policymakers on capital spending in the NHS in England. It has been produced ahead of the Autumn Statement on 17 November. Capital spending is used to construct facilities and buildings such as new hospitals or GP surgeries, to purchase and maintain equipment and IT, and to fund research and development. It […]

Health and Social Care: What do we want from the next Prime Minister?

Download Publication Online Reader When the new Prime Minister takes office on 5 September, they will be immediately faced with a difficult autumn and winter for the health and care sector. NHS waits are now at historic levels across both emergency and elective care, and there has been a rapid decline in public satisfaction with general practice. In social care, people are struggling to be assessed for their needs, and […]

Devolve to evolve?

Download Publication Specialised services typically care for small numbers of patients with rare or complex conditions. They are commonly overlooked in debates around the future of the NHS. This is despite costs growing by over 50% in eight years, and now exceeding £20bn per year. This one part of the NHS now receives more taxpayer funding than providing police services and fighting crime. The spotlight is returning, with proposals from […]

At Your Service

Download Publication General practice has always been the foundation and gateway to the NHS. However the problems are mounting up: a stretched and increasingly burnt-out workforce, no systematic reporting or analysis of activity and demand, fragmentation with secondary care, and confusing and dated contracting and reimbursement mechanisms. The status quo is increasingly unacceptable to both patients and GPs. There is now a consensus that changes are needed, including to the […]

A Wait on your Mind?

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo. Download Publication The waiting list for elective treatment in the NHS in England has reached an unprecedented level. It is likely to become the defining NHS issue as we approach the next general election, and brings a very real human cost as millions endure a long and uncertain wait. So what can […]

Closing the COVID 19 data gap

Download Publication Online Reader We are now into the eighth week of the national vaccine rollout. The programme has in many ways already been hugely successful with 6.5 million people, more than one in ten adults in the UK, receiving their first dose, at a rate that is unmatched in Europe. The Government, NHS England and the devolved administrations have continued to ramp up deployment and are on course to […]

Related Blogs

What does the Levelling Up White Paper mean for Health and Social Care policy?

There has been much anticipation about ‘Levelling Up’ within the health care sector. It was viewed as a vehicle to land existing arguments about health inequalities that have escaped concerted focus over the past decade. As Policy Exchange warned before, meeting those elevated expectations was going to be tough. What has been the result? As widely trailed, improvements to health outcomes is listed among twelve core ‘missions’. The commitment is that Healthy […]

A single bus ride may have saved more than a million lives: what the Government can now do to further boost clinical research

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the difference clinical research can make. The ground-breaking RECOVERY trial was conceived of as two academics – Prof Martin Landray and Sir Jeremy Farrar – rode the Number 18 bus between Euston and Sudbury in early March 2020. Two years later, RECOVERY has recruited 45,000 participants, and led to the identification of two viable now commonly used therapeutics for hospitalised COVID patients. The trial additionally […]

Social care reform is welcome but must be first step on bigger journey

This week’s announcement of a health and social care levy was hugely significant. Much has been made of the impact on the taxation system: a 1.25 percentage point increase in national insurance contributions across employee earnings and employer wage costs (representing a 2.5% overall increase in the tax rate on earnings). It’s a move that will raise £12-14bn a year, and take this Conservative Government into new territory on exchequer […]

Any reset of waiting times must put more information in the hands of patients

One in ten people in England are now waiting for a routine procedure in the NHS (often described as elective or planned care). For many of these people, the wait will number several months or years. And the total number of people waiting will grow substantially over the next 12 months, as many of the estimated seven million people who did not seek treatment during the pandemic are referred by […]

Next in the sequence: Considering the future role of genomic medicine within mainstream NHS care

Almost exactly a year ago, on 16 March 2020, a group of scientists submitted a proposal to the UK Government outlining the COVID-19 Genomics UK Consortium (COG-UK) plan to deliver large scale and rapid virus sequencing capability. Fast forward to the present day, and the project has delivered whole genome sequencing of the virus on an unmatched scale – with more than 350,000 viruses sequenced at latest count, nearly half of the […]

Taking back control? The forthcoming white paper should be cautiously welcomed

The forthcoming white paper should be cautiously welcomed. While not perfect, these proposals to enhance political accountability are long overdue, writes Robert Ede. On first impression, a government white paper on legislative reform may appear technocratic. But measures to enhance political accountability are of first-rate importance to the public – who are both the funders and consumers of health and social care services. And that is why the leak of the […]

Following the science? Policymakers deserve their share of praise for backing a sector that is leading the UK out of the pandemic

Throughout the pandemic, debate has swirled around the relationship between science and Government. This debate has been fierce, loud and challenging. But beneath the noise, there is a history of successive UK Governments of different political parties working with and backing a sector that is now at the heart of our way forward. Back in early 2010, the Royal Society, at the request of the Government, prepared a plan for science research […]

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