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²gether NHS Foundation Trust is pleased to announce that it has appointed a new non-executive director, Marcia Gallagher.

Marcia brings with her 40 years’ NHS service and her experience both as a qualified accountant and the holder of a number of senior functioning roles in the NHS.

Marcia, who lives in Lydbrook, in the Forest of Dean, worked in both commissioner and provider organisations in Gloucestershire, Herefordshire and the West Midlands. More recently, she worked for NHS England, before her retirement in January 2016.

Marcia has had both a professional and personal involvement with mental health services, something that has helped drive her decision to become involved with ²gether. She explained: “I was attracted to ²gether by the good reputation the Trust has, but I also have a personal understanding, through a family member, of the importance of good mental health and the impact it can have on someone’s physical health.

“It’s an area that I am passionate about and one that I have been involved with throughout my career, having spent time on-call in a mental health unit, which gave me a good understanding of operational issues.

“I feel that I can make a difference and, in the words of the Trust, I want to make life better.

“I want to ensure there is high quality patient care available for all service users. I want, where possible, to strive towards a service that is designed around an individual’s specific needs.”

Throughout her career she has undertaken a variety of voluntary work, something she has continued into retirement with her work with the Royal Voluntary Service.

She is keen to use the skills she has developed during her career in her role as non-executive director and Chair of the Audit Committee for the Trust. Marcia said: “I believe I’ve still got a contribution to make to the NHS. I feel that the skills I have obtained in my career are transferable and will allow me to bring independent advice and a breadth of experience to my role as a non-executive director.”

Marcia recognises the challenges that the Trust faces going forward and feels her experience will be valuable in guiding the Trust through this. She added: “I have no doubt that the Trust is entering an increasingly challenging financial climate, and I want to ensure that I help steer it through that challenging time, while continuing to try to improve the quality of care.

“As chair of the Audit Committee, I want to build upon the good financial systems, processes and governance that already exist within ²gether.

“I am delighted to be joining the trust and see it as a real privilege to be able to make a contribution.”

Ruth FitzJohn, Chair of ²gether NHS Foundation Trust, welcomed Marcia’s appointment. She said: “Marcia is a very welcome addition to our team. We look forward to utilising her skills and experience, which will stand her in good stead as a non-executive director. As chair of the Audit Committee, she will have an important role to play in our future development and our continued drive to provide the best possible service to all the communities we serve.”