Autumn 2021 issue
Est. Reading: 3 minutes

New Governor Hazel Thomas

We asked new elected Newham Governor, Hazel Thomas, to give her thoughts and first impressions on her experience of being a Governor.

What made you stand to become a Governor for ELFT?

As a local resident for over fifty years, I have a strong connection with Newham. I have an interest and passion for contributing and supporting the health and well-being of the general public. I am now retired following many years of working as a Specialist Public Health Nurse at North East London NHS Foundation Trust, East London Foundation NHS Trust and the London Borough of Newham Community Health in various roles. I am committed to representing the views of local people and share my experiences, knowledge and skills of working at various levels promoting good health to improve the outcome of the lives of people within the community. I have sound knowledge and understanding of the function and structure of the NHS which has given me insight in to how best the local population can be served. My previous lead roles included the following: Specialist Community Practice Teacher, Clinical Supervisor, Safeguarding Supervisor, Care Quality Commission, Clinical Effectiveness and Audit. These roles were to ensure high standards and good quality care was given to the patients which were safe, effective, of value and responsive to their individual needs.

As a ELFT Governor, I will use my experience of working together with families, partnership working with statutory and voluntary sectors as well as my communication and listening skills with service users, the Council of Governors and its Committees to the best of my ability to ensure that the health and wellbeing of those we serve are improved and maintained.

What meetings have you joined so far and is there anything in particular you have learnt about ELFT from the meetings?

Prior to starting my Governor role on 1 November, I attended a one day Governor Induction session held via Zoom. I was welcomed and introduced to various Governors and ELFT staff. I learnt about my role and responsibilities both statutory and non-statutory including representing members of the public, holding Non-Executive Directors individually and collectively to account for the performance of the Board, working with the Trust to help improve patient and staff experience, improving performance and improving value. I learnt about the visions and mission statement of the Trust, ELFT’s strategy for implementing, improving and maintaining high standards and quality of care /service to all service users through quality improvement programmes/projects. I also learnt about the importance of working collectively with other Governors, I learnt about the Trust’s priorities, Governance. I also had the opportunity to listen to various presentations and ask relevant and appropriate questions.

What have you been involved in so far?

In the first month of my role I have attended many meetings for Governors including meeting with Newham borough and service directors to receive the latest updates on services in Newham, a development session on Social Work, a Governors Open Forum meeting, Communications and Engagement Committee meeting and my first Council of Governors Meeting.

What are your first impressions of being a Governor?

My first impression of being a Governor is that this role is very interesting and I look forward to being part of the team. There is lots to learn and share. What aspect of being a Governor are you most looking forward to? I am looking forward to working with other Governors and work in partnership with the Trust to ensure that the views of the public are represented in service development and implementation.

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