Our Board

The Trust Board is made up of Non-­Executive and Executive Directors who together are responsible for leading Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust 

The Trust Board is accountable for setting our strategic direction, monitoring our performance against objectives, ensuring high standards of corporate governance and helping to promote links between the Trust and the local community.

The Trust Board meets in public six times a year and anyone is welcome to attend.

Trust Board Declarations of Interest

Our Board vision and values

CARES values logo


  • We will advocate for the best outcomes for our patients
  • We will pay attention to and address issues of inequality
  • The health of our local population is important to us and we will reflect in our decision making


  • We will play a leading role in improving the health and wellbeing of our local population
  • We will be active participants in realising the vision for our regional ICS
  • We are ambitious; our vision is to make us outstanding


  • We will continue to listen and respond to concerns raised by our patients and staff
  • We will do what we say and do so in a timely manner
  • We will ensure our decisions are based on collaboration with the interests of our staff and patients at the centre


  • We will lead by example
  • We will work to empower employees at all levels
  • We will empower our leaders to lead and manage their teams


  • We will support staff to implement evidence based learning to improve our service
  • We will adopt a positive approach to working with our partners achieving shared ICS objectives
  •  We will support our patients to make informed choices that improve their quality of life

Mark Yates - Chair

Mark Yates Chair

As the Trust’s Chair, I’m the leader of the Board but not the organisation - that is the CEO’s role; I am responsible for the smooth, effective and efficient running of the Trust Board and its sub committees. This in turn means ensuring the Board’s members (executive and non-executive) work closely together to ensure decisions are properly made following examination of the available expertise and evidence, which may on occasions mean robust debate! My time at Board level is focussed on financial probity, patient centred improvements and ensuring the appropriate culture is in place to allow our teams at all levels to deliver the best care possible. I also have an external role when I represent the Trust at an Integrated Care System, regional and national level which means working closely with other chairs within our locality and beyond. To carry out my role I believe I need to have a reasonable oversight and understanding of the services we deliver and as such you well may meet me in any location across our Trust as I visit staff to discuss their roles. Prior to accepting my current role as Chair I was Vice Chair at Worcestershire Acute Hospitals Trust, this following an extensive career in the Fire Service which culminated in me being Chief Fire Officer for Herefordshire and Worcestershire. I have sat on organisational boards for over 20 years which includes public and private sector, a charity and a school governing body.

Robert Mackie - Chief Executive

Robert Mackie

Robert took up post with the Trust on 1 July 2011 as Director of Finance. He previously worked for the NHS Walsall, initially as Director of Resources from October 2008 and then from November 2010 as Interim Chief Executive. Robert is qualified accountant and joined the NHS with the 1998 cohort of the national financial management training scheme, having previously worked in general management within the private sector.

John Devapriam - Medical Director and Deputy CEO

John Devapriam


I have over 20 years’ experience working in the National Health Service, and took up the role of Medical Director in 2018. Together with the Director of Nursing, I am responsible for quality of care and delivery of the clinical strategy in the Trust. I am responsible for the professional standards of doctors, dentists and pharmacists in the organisation and I oversee medicines management and psychological interventions. I am the Chief Clinical Information Officer and Caldicott Guardian. I am a consultant psychiatrist by background and undertake clinical work in the Learning Disability service in Worcestershire. Previously, I was the National Professional Advisor for Learning Disability at the Care Quality Commission and Chaired the Quality Network at the Royal College of Psychiatry. I am also a Medical Member of the First Tier Tribunal for Mental Health and the Lead Editor for learning disability and mental health at MindEd, Heath Education England. My interest areas are in systems leadership, strategy development, mentoring, advancing equities and population health management. I am also an active clinician researcher and have contributed to several book chapters, peer reviewed publications and national reports.

Elaine Clough - Director of People & Organisational Development

Elaine Clough

Elaine has been in public services for more than three decades as an Organisation Development & HRD professional. She’s worked in Local Government, for a national and European public sector consultancy, and has lectured in Higher Education on programmes such as the Elizabeth Garrett Anderson. More recently, Elaine has worked in the Police Service and has consulted to the organising committee for the Commonwealth Games 2022 and regional local government authorities.

Natalie Willetts - Director of Nursing and Quality

Natalie Willets, Director of Nursing

Natalie joined the Trust in April 2022 from Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust where she was Deputy Director of Nursing and led the Trusts COVID-19 vaccination programme. Previous to this, Natalie was Head of Healthcare at HMP Birmingham, where she was responsible for operational and clinical management for the health services within the prison. Natalie is an RMN, has previously managed children’s mental health services, and has been a nurse consultant in mental health inpatient services.

Matthew Hall - Chief Operating Officer

Matthew Hall Chief Operating Officer

Matthew is responsible for clinical service delivery and emergency planning. He joined the WHCT in May 2019, from Solent NHS Trust - where some of his previous roles were Deputy Chief Operating Officer, Clinical Director for Mental Health Services and Operations Director. He has worked in the NHS since 1990 and is a Registered Mental Health Nurse. He holds an MBA from the University of Leicester.

Denise Lewis - Director of Finance

Denise Lewis

Gill Harrad - Company Secretary

Gill Harrad Company Secretary


Gill joined the Trust from Birmingham and Solihull mental Health NHS Foundation Trust, where she was Company Secretary/Head of Legal Services. She qualified as a solicitor in 1994 working in local authorities in Warrington, Gloucestershire and Birmingham, undertaking a broad range of legal work. She moved into the NHS in 2007 working in a specialist Mental Health Trust.  She is responsible for corporate governance in the Trust. 

Sue Harris - Director of Strategy and Partnerships

Susan Harris Director of Strategy & Partnerships

Sue was appointed in May 2012. Her Directorate responsibilities include strategy and business development, business planning, the Programme Management Office, marketing and communication, patient self-management and community engagement. Prior to a secondment to the Strategic Health Authority in 2011, Sue was, from 2009, Lead Commissioner for mental health services in Worcestershire. Prior to this role, she was a national director for Turning Point, a leading social enterprise, Sue has over 20 years of business development experience in the health and social care field across a range of sectors.

Lisa Yates - Director of Digital and CIO

Lisa Yates

I have been in the NHS for over 25 years. Starting in a clinical role, I moved into the digital space as part of the National Programme for IT, which is where I have continued to build my career over the past 16 years.

I joined the Trust in April 2020 as Deputy Chief Information Officer, bringing with me 6 years of being both an Associate Director and Director of IT of the managed IT service for the Acute Trust, Mental Health Trust and Primary Care across Gloucestershire. Previous to this I had delivered a number of high-profile digital projects and programmes of work, including the deployment of a LIMS system across all Health Board throughout Wales.

I have a passion for taking a digital vision and making it a reality, ensuring the solutions deliver benefits for clinicians and patients or service users alike. The role of Director of Digital/CIO is vital to ensure the Trust continues to provide digital transformation, working with clinicians, colleagues and partners to ensure the optimisation of our digital and data services.

Rob Cunningham - Director of Intermediate & Urgent Care

Rob Cunningham

I work closely with the Chief Operating Officer and system partners to ensure that people receive excellent, safe care at the right time & in the best place. Most of that care is usually provided in peoples own homes, community hospitals and care homes

Janet Clarke - Non-executive Director/Vice Chair

Janet Clarke

I worked as a clinician in the NHS for many years and I am committed to supporting our teams to provide an excellent clinical experience for our patients. I chair the Quality and Safety Committee which oversees and provides assurance that we are delivering safe and effective clinical services. I also sit on the group that supports and advices our Medical Director in his role as Trust Responsible Officer to ensure our medical, dental and pharmacy clinicians are safe and supported practitioners. I am a member of Workforce and Audit committees as there are many crossovers issues discussed in these committees and the quality of patient care.

Martin Charters - Non-executive Director

Martin Charters Non Executive Director

Martin joined the Trust in May 2018. He qualified as a chartered accountant, with Deloitte Haskins and Sells, prior spending most of his career working in and for the NHS. He has held senior roles in finance, prior to working in advisory services, including partner level roles in Atos Consulting, Capgemini and BDO. His more recent experience has been focused on clinical service transformation, population health management, and developing integrated care systems. Committee membership: Audit, Quality & Safety, Workforce and Mental Health Legislation.

Veena Allison - Non-executive Director

Picture of Veena Allison Associate Non Executive Director

Career Background

After initially qualifying and working as a solicitor in private practice and the charity sector for a number of years, I set up my own HR and Employment Law consultancy over 20 years ago. In my capacity as an employment law consultant, I help local and national organisations to operate in a fair and legal manner. I also run a management training and development company, with the aim of ensuring that managers have the tools and skills to enable them to get the best out of their teams. This has given me a breadth of experience of working in the private and public sector, across a variety of settings including health, fire services, housing associations, education and multi-national organisations.  

In addition to my legal qualifications, I have also qualified as a positive psychology practitioner, and a certified resilience workplace trainer in recent years, and I now work at the strange intersection between law, HR and positive psychology, which I hope makes my practice more effective.

What drives me

I am a firm believer that nobody should wake up dreading to go to work on a daily basis, and as the NHS is one of the largest employers in the world, I am keen to contribute my experience and energy in helping to make our Trust a great place to come to work. Research has repeatedly shown that happy people deliver better services; what better reason to do all we can to give our staff a safe, respectful and ultimately rewarding experience.

Outside of work

I live on the Worcestershire borders, and spend much of my time on the Malvern Hills, hiking, running (slowly!) and trying to keep up with my two children who are both hoping to qualify in health-related careers (when they are not eating me out of house and home….),

Carole Cumino - Non-executive Director

Picture of Carole Cumino Associate Non Executive Director

Career Background:

I previously worked for 30 plus years in the UK Civil Service in a wide variety of roles. In 2011 I moved to the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise sector (VCSE) to become Chief Executive of Worcestershire Association of Carers - a local charity supporting unpaid carers. I've also been a VCSE representative on the Worcestershire Health and Wellbeing Board, the Herefordshire & Worcestershire (H&W) Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (and subsequently the H&W Integrated Care Partnership and Assembly). I'm currently 'semi-retired' also doing some freelance facilitation and supporting the Worcestershire VCSE Alliance.

What drives me:

I am passionate about making sure that patients, carers and all of us as residents of H&W have the opportunity to have meaningful conversations about what matters to us, and that we factor this into the design and delivery of services. Tackling unfairness and finding ways to include people who for whatever reason fall societal 'norms' the drives me to look for new and better ways of collaborating to tackle health inequalities.

Outside of work:

I love most sports, have played hockey for Herefordshire and cricket for Middlesex and Worcestershire - I still play some veteran's cricket when I can. I'm a qualified lawn bowls coach, like learning just for the sake of it, enjoy exploring the UK in my camper van and am looking forward to having more time to spend with family in semi-retirement. 

Sue Hincks - Associate Non-executive Director

Sue Hincks

Career Background

I am currently Membership Director of the Girls’ Schools Association, having been Headmistress of Bolton School for 10 years. I continue to work with a number of schools as a Governor or Trustee, including Bolton Impact Trust, an Alternative Provider. I am also Safeguarding Governor at Bolton University. 

What drives me

I am committed to ensuring the best outcomes for children and young people. As a carer for my mum, I am also motivated by a desire to support older members of the community and their families. I believe that good governance enables the delivery of appropriate strategic outcomes, rooted in the needs of the local population. 

Outside of work

I enjoy walking in the Malvern hills and enjoying the beautiful countryside around Evesham

Biraj Parmar - Non-Executive Director

Biraj Parmer

Biraj is delighted to have joined the Trust as an Associate Non Executive Director.  Having spent more than 25 years in the investment and commercial banking industry, working at a senior level with some of the biggest international banks, he is proud to have a successful track record of financial, strategic and people leadership.

Biraj decided to retire from finance & banking in May 2019 in order to spend more time involved in charity work, public sector work and socially engaged endeavours.  Biraj has since served as NED for a large acute NHS Trust in Hertfordshire and understands the challenges being faced by patients and healthcare providers, especially during and following the pandemic, and now has a strong personal interest in mental healthcare, especially the provision for young people.  

In his spare time, Biraj is learning to play the guitar, practicing tai-chi and, along with his wife Beth, enjoys long country walks with their two dogs, Bruno and Enzo.