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Health Secretary Victoria Atkins visits CUH on International Women’s Day

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care visited Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust this afternoon to meet staff and patients.

A group of female CUH staff and Victoria Atkins walking along a hospital corridor
Health Secretary Victoria Atkins with CUH staff on International Women's Day

On International Women’s Day, Victoria Atkins and the government’s Women’s Health Ambassador, Dame Lesley Regan, met women in a range of senior leadership roles at CUH, including staff working on cutting-edge research and clinical developments.

Ms Atkins toured the Cambridge Clinical Research Centre (CCRC) and joined researchers for a discussion on women’s health. She heard about the different programmes and projects taking place in Cambridge, including research into risk adapted breast radiotherapy, personalised breast cancer treatment, sickle cell disease and extreme pregnancy sickness.

The Health Secretary visited the Rosie Hospital where she met staff and patients. Ms Atkins toured the Rosie birth centre, delivery unit and the maternal and fetal medicine clinics.

A new mother in a birthing gown smiling, a father holding a 1 day old baby and the Health Secretary smiling
Health Secretary meeting Yuki and Jordan Black holding Baby Hazel in the Rosie Hospital

The visit ended with an opportunity to see life-saving technology that treats seriously-ill babies. LocANTS, a cloud-based platform, was developed at CUH and is a UK first. The virtual technology effectively “parachutes” consultants in Cambridge into other hospitals – meaning babies can be cared for closer to home, helping families to stay together.

Dr Sue Broster, Executive Director for Innovation, Digital and Improvement at CUH said: “We were delighted to welcome the Secretary of State to the Trust and introduce her to our incredible staff working on some very exciting research aimed at improving patient care and outcomes now, and in the future.”

The visit followed Wednesday’s Budget, in which Chancellor Jeremy Hunt announced £3m for CUH to develop its long-term plans for healthcare on the Cambridge Biomedical Campus.

On International Women’s Day, I was delighted to see some of important work being carried out here in Cambridge. I've met inspirational women delivering high quality care and others working at the forefront of new scientific discoveries that will help find the treatments of the future.

Health Secretary, Victoria Atkins

Health and Social Care Secretary Victoria Atkins said: “In Cambridge they are carrying out research into women’s health to learn more about the conditions that affect women exclusively, and how women are affected by other common conditions, such as heart disease.

“We are prioritising research in our Women’s Health Strategy in 2024. Cambridge University Hospitals is doing fantastic work in improving maternity care and progressing our understanding of women’s health more generally.”

A group of women and men sitting on a grey sofa smiling
Health Secretary Victoria Atkins and the government’s Women’s Health Ambassador, Dame Lesley Regan, with women's health researchers

Among those who met the Health Secretary were:

  • Ms Kanwalraj Moar, Divisional Director for Women and Children’s services
  • Dr Sue Broster, Executive Director for Innovation, Digital and Improvement, Consultant Neonatologist
  • Dr Kristin-Anne Rutter, Executive Director, Cambridge University Health Partners
  • Roland Sinker, Chief Executive, CUH
  • Claire Stoneham, Executive Director for Strategy and Major Projects
  • Professor Krishna Chatterjee, Consultant Endocrinologist
  • Professor Jean Abraham, Oncologist at CUH, directs the Precision Breast Cancer Institute
  • Eilish Midlane, Chief Executive Officer, Royal Papworth Hospital
  • Lorraine Szeremeta, Chief Nurse, CUH
  • Amy Sutton-Cole, Research Midwife and Pregnancy Outcome Prediction Study 2 Trial Co-ordinator
  • Dr Arunava Dhar, Consultant Paediatrician and Neonatologist,
  • Professor Charlotte Coles, Professor of Breast Cancer Clinical Oncology, NIHR Research Professor at the University of Cambridge
  • Claire Garratt, Head of Midwifery, CUH
  • Dr Hannah Lobos-Missfelder, Consultant and Clinical Director for Obstetrics and Gynaecology
  • Dr Joo Ern Ang, Consultant Medical Oncologist and the Clinical Lead for Gynae-oncology Research, CUH
  • Professor Gordon Smith, Consultant in Maternal-Fetal Medicine at The Rosie Hospital, Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, University of Cambridge
  • Dr Eliane Young, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and lead for psychological therapies for Women and Children’s Services
  • Dr Catherine Aiken, Consultant Obstetrician, specialising in complex material and fetal conditions
  • Sam Lockhart, trainee diabetes and endocrinology doctor