Health trust comms chief moves to NHS Improvement role

Career NHS comms specialist Jack Adlam has been appointed head of comms for the Midlands and East region at NHS Improvement.

Jack Adlam is the new head of comms at NHS Improvement for its Midlands and East regions
Jack Adlam is the new head of comms at NHS Improvement for its Midlands and East regions

He joins the body, which oversees foundation trusts, NHS trusts and independent providers of NHS-funded care, from London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust, where he has spent two years, during which time he was promoted from deputy head to head of comms.

Adlam, who describes himself as a "passionate, proactive and highly motivated communications and engagement professional", started in his new role this week. He reports to the head of service improvement.

He is part of a small team responsible for external and internal comms and will provide strategic comms and engagement advice to NHS Improvement’s regional senior management team, as well as supporting trust comms teams across the region.

Adlam has worked at a variety of NHS organisations since graduating with a degree in public relations from Leeds Beckett University in 2010.

His previous roles at senior level have included comms manager at Nottingham University Hospital, and deputy head of comms at Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Adlam commented: "With winter ahead, my immediate priority will be to work with and support communications colleagues across the region during these busy months."

He described his role as being "a supporter and a helping hand where needed".

Next year will see closer working between NHS Improvement and NHS England, as well as the publication of the long-term plan for the NHS.

These challenges will "require strategic communications and engagement input to ensure we actively engage and demonstrate meaningful change for our patients, staff, local communities and wider stakeholders", Adlam said.

"Another important priority, and one I am passionate about, is to support the communications development programme, provided jointly by NHS Improvement and NHS England."

He added: "I have personally benefited from this excellent programme, which includes a tailored postgraduate NHS communications qualification, regional workshops and a mentoring scheme. I want to ensure NHS communications colleagues in the region have access to this programme and are equipped with the skills needed to meet the challenges we face as communicators."

Adlam replaces Michelle Smith, who is taking up a job as associate comms director at NHS Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group.

Her new role encompasses internal and external comms, public affairs, digital, insights and public engagement.

Smith said: "The voice of communities absolutely needs to be at the heart of what we do, and so one of my key priorities will be ensuring that we are engaging in innovative ways that meet the needs of our diverse population."

She added: "I also want to see us growing our digital reach, and working successfully as partners across the system to make best use of our resources and amplify messages."

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