I have a great deal of experience in the NHS, starting my working life as a porter and after becoming a trainee manager worked in the NHS for 39 years. I have held managerial posts in acute hospitals, community service, the voluntary sector and Clinical networks across Leicester, Derbyshire, Sheffield, Hertfordshire and South Bedfordshire.
Amongst other roles I have also been a Trustee for an Adult Hospice in Hertfordshire and am currently the tripartite representative for Healthwatch Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland on the University Hospitals of Leicester (UHL) Board. I have extensive knowledge of the NHS and Social Care Services in Leicester and have helped Healthwatch Leicester to reach its independent status it has today and work towards ensuring that the residents of Leicester have the best Health and Social Care Services in Leicester.
I have extensive experience in the field of community relations in which I have worked for almost ten years, leading on projects aimed at empowering people to participate meaningfully in local decision making. I have a strong passion for public policy, and have explored deeper into the academic side of the discipline by undertaking a BA in Public Policy and Government. My interest lies in understanding evidence based public health policy, with particular focus on interventions relating to wellbeing and health behaviour changes. Before joining Healthwatch Leicester in April 2013, I led on the public and patients engagement at Leicester LINk, and was responsible for building up partnerships in communities. I believe that community engagement is about creating relationships and trust, providing diverse opportunities to be involved, where the engagement of local people go beyond traditional methods of collecting data and feedback through surveys and consultations.
I moved to Leicester from Lancashire to study at De Montfort University in 1995 but didn’t want to leave once my course was up. After working in the banking sector for 10 years and ending up as a Complaints Manager, I took voluntary redundancy in 2010 to take a step back and re-evaluate my career. I began working in Outreach and Public Engagement when I joined the Local Involvement Networks (LINks) in Leicester City in 2011 and moved across from LINks to Healthwatch when in 2013. I enjoy being able to connect with such a varied community of people who make up Leicester City.
I’m passionate about a lot of things but one of the most important parts of our role in Healthwatch is to ensure Health and Social Care services are accessible by everyone who needs them, that includes helping some understand what that means.
I am the Advisor, Communications and Dental Lead for Healthwatch Leicester. I am responsible for the Signposting and Information Service which provides information on local services including dentists, GPs and other health and social care services and also contact for communications. My additional responsibility as Dental Lead and work closely with NHS England’s Local Professional Network, Leicestershire Dental Committee and the NHS England Local Area Teams. I came to Healthwatch Leicester in April 2013 which replaced Leicester LINk which I worked for from 2010 and worked in Leicestershire and Rutland Primary Care Trust for 2 years previous to that.
I spent 11 years with E.On UK as Customer Service Administrator, Lead Representative and Negotiator in E.On’s Retail Section for Unison and a member of their European Works Council . My main focus has been around Customer Service and I hope I can use that extensive experience to help people looking to Healthwatch Leicester for information and advice about local health and social care services.