Last Updated: March, 2019

Originally set up as the  Foundation Trust  regulator in 2004, its scope was expanded by the  2012 Health and Social Care Act  to regulate all NHS-funded services, and to enforce competition and integration of services. It was incorporated into NHS Improvement in April 2016.

The board of Monitor has included:

  • Dr David Benett (former Chief Exec) - ex Senior Partner at  McKinsey  (18 years).
  • Keith Palmer (former Chair) - ex Vice Chairman of NM Rothschild Merchant Bank.
  • Sigurd Reinton - Director of NATS Holdings and ex Director at McKinsey.
  • Heather Lawrence - non-Executive Director of NMC Healthcare until 2016 and member of Dr Foster Global Comparators Founders Board.
  • Adrian Masters - ex McKinsey, IBM and  PricewaterhouseCoopers .
  • Stephen Hay - ex KPMG.
  • Penny Dash - ex  Kaiser Permanente  and co-author of  NHS Plan 2000 

92 percent of Monitor's staff have no clinical experience. As of 2015, only 27 have clinical experience while 31 staff are employed to produce public relations spin in Monitor's 'department of strategic communications'.

A former Chief Executive of Monitor, David Bennett, was also a former Chief Executive of McKinsey.

Monitor has been criticised for using its powers to licence  Foundation Trusts  as a way to cut back hospital services in England to a 'basic package', similar to the services that must still be provided in the case of a Foundation Trust failure.

One of Monitor's duties is to vet the fitness of companies bidding for NHS contracts under the  Any Qualified Provider (AQP)  regime. However, this is simply not happening and Monitor does not even hold a list of AQP companies and organisations. From 2014/15 onwards checking the qualification of providers is the responsibility of  Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs)  and  Commissioning Support Units . This also opens the possibility of providers being accepted as qualified by one CCG, but not so by another. Unlike NHS Trusts private companies are not subject to the Freedom of Information Act, allowing them to hide potential sins and omissions.

Private providers will typically display the NHS logo, leading patients to think they are being treated by the NHS, which is not the case even if the NHS is footing the bill. When a private provider delivers an unsafe service under the NHS logo, the NHS gets the blame.