Dr Chai Patel CBE
Chai was, until March 2007, the Chief Executive of the Priory Group, the UK’s largest independent specialist mental health and education services group. He qualified as a Doctor from Southampton University in 1979 and has recently launched a comeback setting up an acquisition vehicle called Court Cavendish to take advantage of opportunities in the sector.
In 1988, Chai founded Court Cavendish, which was rapidly recognised as a high quality continuing care organisation. It was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1993, and in 1996 Chai merged it with Takecare to create Care First, the UK’s largest continuing care company. He remained as Chief Executive until it was taken over by BUPA in 1997. In 1999 he acquired, and became Chief Executive of, Westminster Health Care plc, the largest publicly quoted healthcare services group in the UK, which acquired Priory Hospitals in 2000. After a management buyout of the Care Home division in 2002, Chai continued as Chief Executive of Priory Healthcare.
Prior to forming Court Cavendish, Chai spent four years as an investment banker with Merrill Lynch and Lehman Brothers.
From 1997 to 2002, he was part of the Government’s Better Regulation Task Force leading on a number of Reports including those on Long Term Care, Early Years Education and Red Tape affecting Head Teachers. In 2000, the Health Secretary appointed Chai to the Modernisation Action Team drawing up a national plan for the new NHS. He was also part of the Task Force for Older People.
Chai is very involved in healthcare policy issues, is a Trustee of the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR), a Senior Associate of the King’s Fund, a member of the NHS Confederation Affiliate Forum and a founder member of the New Health Network. He is also a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and the Royal Society of Arts, a member of the Institute of Directors, a Companion of the Institute of Management and has received an Honorary Doctorate from the Open University.
In 1999 he was awarded a CBE for his services to the development of social care policies.
Chai Patel and his family purchased Royal Madikwe in May 2004. This is a realization of a long-standing personal dream. Ugandan by birth, Chai’s earliest childhood memories are filled with fondness for his African home and it is with great joy that he is now in the privileged position of returning to his roots, to create a new home that will not only provide guests with unforgettable experiences & education but will also give Chai the opportunity to reinvest in the continent of his birth through his new charity Bright Futures Trust.
Through Bright Futures - http://www.brightfuturetrust.com/ - Chai has donated considerable sums to the work of the infant trust since the beginning.