Portland has hired NHS Confederation head of communications Louise Fish to lead its new practice, Portland Health.
The new division aims to combine political, media, and digital expertise to support businesses in the health and social care sectors as they adapt to the changes created by UK healthcare reform and regulation.
Fish will join the agency at the beginning of March and will report to Oliver Pauley, public affairs partner at Portland. She will oversee the agency's hires working in her team.
Fish is charged with driving growth at Portland Health and with leading its focus on strategic communications advice to health and social care organizations; policy and public affairs advice to clients following the 2012 Health and Social Care Act; and advice to organizations engaging local authorities and well-being boards, among other targets.
Fish is director of communications and engagement at the NHS Confederation, which is a membership body for “the full range of organizations that commission and provide NHS services.” It also works to influence health policy.
Before joining the NHS Confederation in 2009, she was a consultant at both Hanover and Fishburn Hedges, and was the communications director for the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence for nearly seven years.
“'The issues surrounding public health have never been more in the public eye, with consumer and patient groups demanding more action from business,” said Tim Allan, MD at Portland. “The creation of Portland Health will enable us to provide the specialist advice that companies adapting to such dramatic change need.'
Portland's clients include Apple, Google, McDonald's, and Pfizer. Last week it hired Dan Timms, a senior government communicator, as associate director.
This article originally appeared on the website of PRWeek UK, the sister publication of PRWeek at Haymarket Media.