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Trust honours former chief executive

The newly refurbished urology department at West Suffolk Hospital has been named after its former chief executive, Johanna Finn, to recognise her impact on the NHS and the Trust in her long and varied healthcare career.

An experienced leader, committed to local health services and the Suffolk community, Johanna worked across health and related education services and levels during a 45-year-long career.

The West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (WSFT), was delighted to welcome Johanna back to the hospital today (24 August) for the official opening of the unit.

After a year working at King’s College Hospital, maths graduate Johanna joined the NHS graduate training scheme in 1973, which provided an accelerated programme of leadership development for NHS managers. She became one of the few women, and youngest managers, to reach chief officer level aged just 28. She went on to become chief executive of West Suffolk Hospital in 1993, before moving into consultancy in 2001. However, always an advocate for healthcare, she most recently became a member of the West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) governing body, leading on patient and public engagement before retiring in March this year.

Johanna said: “It’s a real honour to have officially opened the unit today. I was really overwhelmed when I found out about the unit being named after me. I have a deep respect for the quality of services and the staff at the Trust, and I accept the honour with pride on behalf of all the staff who make the hospital so brilliant.

“I was delighted to see that some of the staff I worked with years ago are still working here in Bury St Edmunds, which shows it really is a great place to work. I’m so pleased to see such outstanding leadership here, and to see the hospital producing excellent results for local people.”

Craig Black, director of resources and deputy chief executive, said: “The urology department move and refurbishment has been a really important part of the Trust’s capital project programme, and began in August last year.

“The move has more than doubled the urology department’s space. This has increased the department’s capacity from one to four scoping rooms, with a dedicated recovery area for urology patients, meaning we can see more patients and they have a better care experience.

“The development has also freed up space in our endoscopy department on the ground floor, increasing our capacity and improving the general environment there too.

“This project really is going to make a big difference to our patients and the staff who work there, so it is appropriate that it is being named after Jo - someone who made a big difference both to our hospital and to the local health services in west Suffolk.”



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Staff honouring former chief executive of West Suffolk Hospital, Johanna Finn, in the newly refurbished urology department.

Staff honouring former chief executive of West Suffolk Hospital, Johanna Finn, in the newly refurbished urology department.