In a landmark move, the National Health Service (NHS) has named Dr. Sue Mann as its inaugural national clinical director for women’s health. Dr. Mann, a consultant renowned for her work in women’s health in City and Hackney, North East London, will spearhead initiatives aimed at enhancing women’s healthcare provision across England. Dr. Mann’s appointment marks a significant milestone in the NHS’s commitment to prioritizing women’s health. In her new role, she will play a pivotal role in implementing the Women’s Health Strategy while facilitating the establishment of women’s health hubs nationwide.

The Women’s Health Strategy encompasses a holistic approach to addressing women’s healthcare needs, with a focus on improving menstrual health services, menopause assessment and treatment, and more. Dr. Mann’s expertise and leadership will be instrumental in driving forward this agenda and ensuring that women receive tailored and accessible healthcare services. Central to Dr. Mann’s responsibilities will be the development of a network of Women’s Health Champions, comprising senior leaders within local care systems. These champions will work collaboratively to advocate for and advance initiatives aimed at improving women’s health outcomes.

Dr. Mann brings a wealth of experience to her new role, having been instrumental in pioneering innovative healthcare solutions for women. Notably, she led the establishment of Women’s Health Hubs in London City and Hackney, as well as the implementation of Virtual Group Consultations for common women’s health issues.

Her appointment comes alongside the announcement of six other National Clinical Directors (NCDs) who will undertake three-year tenures or part-time secondments. These appointments underscore the NHS’s commitment to driving transformational change across various healthcare domains.

Professor Sir Stephen Powis, NHS national medical director, said: “National Clinical Directors play a crucial role in supporting NHS England to deliver our key ambitions – they provide clinical advice and leadership to help drive transformation of services for patients, and ensure an NHS fit for the future, which is why it is a hugely positive step forward that we have announced a new role as part of this cohort – our first ever dedicated NCD for women’s health. The seven people announced today bring with them a wealth of experience and knowledge and I am looking forward to working alongside them and our wider group of NCDs and national specialty advisors to continue to develop and drive forward the work we do across the NHS to provide the best possible care for patients.”

Ruth May, Chief Nursing Officer for England, said: “The NHS is committed to meeting women’s individual healthcare needs, including supporting all local areas to develop a women’s health hub by December 2024, which will improve women’s health outcomes by providing better menstrual health services, menopause assessment and treatment, and more. The appointment of Dr Sue Mann as National Clinical Director for Women’s Health will help us build on and further improve the work the NHS has been doing, making it as easy as possible for women to access advice and care for their specific needs, and significantly improve patient experience.”

Dr Sue Mann, new NHS National Clinical Director for Women’s Health, said: “Having spent my career researching, treating, and developing policy and initiatives focused on women’s health, I have seen firsthand the challenges many women face, as well as the progress that has been made through better understanding and awareness of conditions affecting women. While our understanding and treatment of women’s healthcare has come a long way, we know there is still a lot more we need to do, and I am excited to be able to play a role in that as the first national clinical director for women’s health, working with colleagues in the NHS to help shape important policy and improve the experiences of women’s health in England.”

Minister for Women’s Health Strategy Maria Caulfield said: “This appointment will support the ongoing success of our Women’s Health Strategy to reset the dial and improve healthcare for women. Our Strategy sets out the importance of dedicated expertise and leadership in women’s health and this new role will help make sure women’s needs are at the heart of decision making. I warmly welcome all the new clinical directors, and look forward to working with Dr Sue Mann in particular to improve the care received by women across England.”

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