King’s appoints Chief Medical Officer

13 April 2021 - Dr Leonie Penna appointed on a substantive basis

Dr Leonie Penna

Dr Leonie Penna has been appointed Chief Medical Officer (CMO) at King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

Dr Penna, who has been acting CMO since February 2020, has played a major leadership role throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, managing the Trust’s clinical response. She has now been appointed into the substantive role after a formal recruitment process.

Her appointment comes at time when King’s embeds its clinical leadership model and finalises the development its new clinical strategy. This will shape the future vision, ambition and priorities for the Trust.

Dr Penna will be responsible for delivering the quality, education and training, and research and innovation agenda, as well as being responsible for Medical Professional Practice.

She brings to the role of CMO more than 17 years’ clinical experience working at King’s as a consultant in high-risk obstetrics and fetal medicine. Prior to that Dr Penna worked as a consultant in Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust and St George's University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Since then, she has held a number of leadership roles, initially focused on women’s health, at both King’s College Hospital and the Princess Royal University Hospital.

A graduate of University College London, she undertook her specialist training in south-east and south-west London, including fetal medicine training in the original Harris Birthright Fetal Medicine Unit.

Dr Penna has a reputation as a skilled, hands-on clinician and as a postgraduate and undergraduate educator. She intends to continue some direct patient care and educational activity in her future role.

Notes to editors

1. King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is one of the UK’s largest and busiest teaching hospitals, training over 900 dentists, 750 doctors and 300 nurses every year. The Trust is recognized internationally for its work in liver disease and transplantation, neurosciences, cardiac, haemato-oncology, stroke and major trauma. On 1 October 2013, King’s took over the running of the Princess Royal University Hospital in Bromley and Orpington Hospital, as well as some services at Beckenham Beacon and Queen Mary’s Hospital, Sidcup. The new enlarged organisation has over 10,500 staff and provides over 1 million patient contacts a year. 9,000 babies are delivered by our hospitals each year, and over 750 patients come to our Emergency Departments every day. For more information, please visit the website. You can also support the work of King’s College Hospital at

2. King’s Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre (AHSC) is a pioneering collaboration between King’s College London and Guy’s and St Thomas’, King’s College Hospital and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trusts. We work collectively to make sure that the lessons from research are used more swiftly, effectively and systematically to provide better and more joined up physical and mental health care for people.
Our partnership brings together:

  • three of the UK’s leading NHS Foundation Trusts
  • a world-leading university for health research and education
  • nearly 4.3 million patient contacts
  • more than 43,000 NHS and university staff
  • 31,000 students
  • a combined annual turnover of more than £3.7 billion. @kingshealth

3. At King’s College Hospital we fundraise for the best in treatment, research and health education, leading-edge equipment and improving well-being in our communities. By uniting doctors, nurses, researchers and academics with our supporters and volunteers we can provide the best patient care that goes above and beyond. Find out more and support us at