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NHS Somerset Integrated Care Board (ICB) has appointed a new Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) and a new Chief Finance Officer (CFO). Following a robust recruitment process, Alison Henly has been chosen to take up the CFO position alongside Shelagh Meldrum who has been appointed as the new CNO.

Alison Henly

Alison is currently the Director of Finance, Performance, Contracting and Digital for NHS Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group and will transition across into her new role in the ICB on 1 July 2022.

Alison brings with her a wealth of experience, not only from her time in the CCG where she provides financial and strategic performance leadership across the system, but from having worked for Dorset and Somerset Strategic Health Authority as well as Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust during her time in the NHS.

With an in-depth experience of primary care, contracting and the digital agenda as well as leading the sustainability agenda and accountability governance, Alison constantly strives for quality improvements through transformation and efficiency. Her broad knowledge of health and care system and passion for continual improvements and collaborative working to benefit the people of Somerset will help to provide a cohesive transition in July.

Shelagh Meldrum

Shelagh began her career in nursing in 1987, working predominantly as a senior nurse in acute medicine before becoming a specialist nurse in neurology. In 2016, following 14 years in the independent health care sector, she returned to the NHS working in a variety of executive roles, (including five years as Chief Nurse) at Yeovil District Hospital.

She is well aware of the pressures and challenges experienced across the health system, in particular, nursing, midwifery, and the allied health professional groups and her current role as Chief Officer Partnerships & Collaboration for Yeovil District Hospital and Somerset Foundation Trust, has provided her with an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the wider health and care system, and the potential for greater collaboration and partnership working.

Shelagh will be able to draw on her knowledge and experience to support improvement and collaboration and ensure the clinical, care and support voice is well represented. Shelagh’s passion for improving working cultures and having shared values to allow us to focus on the health and well-being of the population we serve, will help the ICS to fulfil its promise. Shelagh will join as a designate in June 2022, which will help to ensure there is a smooth handover and transition in July.

Jonathan Higman, Chief Executive Designate, said: “I am extremely proud to announce two new appointments to NHS Somerset ICB and to welcome Alison and Shelagh to the team. “These key appointments represent a major step forward in the creation of an executive team which is high-calibre, experienced and well equipped to take forward our ambitions for the future.

“Over the coming months, we will set out in more detail our plans to continue to join up health and care services across the county, with the aim of improving the health and wellbeing of the people of Somerset and tackling health inequalities within the county.”

*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 progress of the ICB can be followed on this page: Integrated Care in Somerset