Mario Varela Celebrates NHS 70th with Us

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In honour of the NHS in its 70th year we are celebrating our wonderful staff.

Mario Varela, Managing Director of the London Procurement Partnership , tells us what he enjoys most about his role “Having to find solutions that satisfy the diverse range of LPP’s members, from large teaching hospitals to small specialist healthcare providers. We cut across both provider and commissioning landscapes, as well as working with the DH, NHS England, NHS Improvement and many other bodies. It is the complexity of the challenge which excites me, and this complex environment attracts people who like operating in challenging situations. ”

Mario says his role through LPP, he works hand in glove with 90+ customers to agree a plan that delivers significant cash releasing savings. These now run in excess of £100m per year. The desire to achieve these savings and see them re-invested in front line services, to treat more patients, is core to LPP’s culture. It is he says “their ultimate objective as a team.”

So why choose to work within the NHS, Mario said: “I did have another life before the NHS, working for BT and Royal Mail Letters. I also had a stint working for one of the large consultancy companies. There, I managed a project for the NHS – it was this work which culminated in me taking a permanent NHS role, in 1989. The rest as they say is history…””

We asked Mario what his favourite memory of his NHS career was “In the days of NHS Supplies, I was sponsored to do an Executive MBA at Cranfield Business School and was one of only two NHS employees on the course. The private sector folk joked about how “cushy” jobs were in the NHS. They claimed that the NHS didn’t offer the real commercial tensions to be found in the private sector. In one of my assignments, I took my MBA team to an NHS hospital to participate in a product rationalisation programme involving a multitude of stakeholders. After a couple of days, they were actually astounded by how much is actually achieved in a highly complex organisation which does play by the normal commercial and managerial conventions. Lesson learnt, I think…”

Thank you Mario!