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Following an extensive recruitment process, four designate independent non-executive director (NED) appointments have been made to the newly formed Somerset Integrated Care Board (ICB).

Integrated Care Boards are being established for every part of the NHS in England. From 1 July this year they will become a statutory NHS body and will take on NHS planning functions currently held by Clinical Commissioning Groups.

The newly appointed NEDs bring a wide range of skills, knowledge, and experience and have been selected because of their commitment to public service and to help the NHS in Somerset continue to prioritise commission high quality, joined up care helping to share the future of health and care for the county’s people and communities.

The four new appointments to the Somerset ICB are:

Suresh Ariaratnam – is a founder of a literary agency representing prize-winning clients from Black and Asian communities as well as a consultant on organisational change, focusing on equity, diversity, and inclusion.

Christopher Foster – former Bishop of Portsmouth and a Lord of Spiritual until May 2021. With over 40 years of experience of ordained ministry as well as experience of working as an academic economist.  During his time as a member of the House of Lords, he frequently spoke on matters of inequality and fair provision and has wide experience of diverse people and communities. He is also a board member and Trustees of the Royal Hospital for Neuro-Disability, chairing its ethics committee.

Dr Caroline Gamlin – is an experienced medical director and public health consultant with over 40 years’ worth of experience. She brings with her a wealth of knowledge and experience and is passionate about equity of access to high quality health care for all, especially those who are disadvantaged and experience disparity in their health outcomes. A long-time resident of Somerset she is also a volunteer mentor for young people in Somerset and has served as an Executive Director at board level for previous Primary Care Trusts, Connexions Somerset, as a Governor of Yeovil hospital and school governor.

Grahame Paine – an experience Non-Executive Director with a proven track record of success and a current NED with Somerset CCG. He brings with him a wealth of sector insight, combined with commercial acumen.

While the ICB will not be formally established as a statutory body until 1 July 2022, the new designates joined on Friday 1 April 2022. This is to help ensure there is a smooth handover and transition from the CCG to the ICB.

Paul von der Heyde, Chair Designate of the future Somerset Integrated Care Board said: “I am delighted to be welcoming Suresh, Christopher, Caroline and Grahame to our newly formed ICB and look forward to working with them.”

These are critical appointments as we move closer to ICBs becoming statutory bodies from 1 July. Our Integrated Care Board will further forge the close relationships between the partners across the Somerset system to ensure our work across the NHS, public sector, Healthwatch and the various community and voluntary sectors will bring increasing benefit to communities across the county as well as continuing much of the work of the CCG.”

Jonathan Higman, Chief Executive Designate of the future Somerset ICB said

“I am so pleased to welcome our four new non-executive directors to our ICB. They each bring with them a unique set of skills and knowledge, which will help us to ensure we focus on what is important to people in Somerset as we work towards our goal of improving services and supporting the people of Somerset to live long and healthy lives.”

People can follow the progress and development of the ICB on this page: Integrated Care in Somerset – Somerset CCG