New director of public health chosen for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough
The new director of public health for Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council has been announced.
Jyoti Atri, currently Interim executive director of public health Wales, was the stand-out candidate in an extremely strong field of applicant.
The role was advertised widely, including in national publications the Health Services Journal, the Local Government Chronical and the British Medical Journal.
The first stage of the rigorous selection process consisted of an interview with the chief executive of Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council, Gillian Beasley. This was followed by an interview focussing on the technical requirements of the role with Chris Bull (advisor to Public Health England), Professor Aliko Ahmed (regional director of Public Health England) and Henrietta Ewart (director of public health, Isle of Man).
The second stage included candidates meeting with representatives of both councils’ health committees, the joint management team and external stakeholders.
The final stage was formal interviews before members of both the staffing and appeals committee of Cambridgeshire County Council and the employment committee of Peterborough City Council last week (15 April).
Jyoti joins the councils with a wealth of public health experience spanning more than 25 years. She has previously been director of public health for Sandwell Council and has held a number of senior roles in the NHS in West Midlands, where she also completed her public health training. Prior to that, Jyoti held a number of public health research and analytical roles across London.
Jyoti said: “I am delighted to have been appointed as the new director of public health for Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council.
“I am impressed by the commitment of both councils to reducing inequalities in health and improving the health and wellbeing of their residents. It is clear that I will also have the support of partner agencies in creating a fair and healthy recovery for the people of Peterborough and Cambridgeshire, after the shock of Covid-19.
“I can’t wait to start my new role and look to make a positive impact on the lives of people living in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.”
Gillian Beasley said: “Jyoti was the stand-out candidate in an extremely strong field of applicants and brings with her a wealth of knowledge, insight and innovation.
“Her breadth and depth of experience and proven strategic ability will be a tremendous asset for both councils and for the residents they serve.
“She joins at a vitally important time as we continue to adapt how we live and work with Covid-19 as a factor in our lives for the foreseeable future – and just as importantly – at a time when we look to the future to ensure the ongoing health and wellbeing of residents throughout Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.”
Dr Liz Robin,who is the current post holder, is to retire at the end of April.
Dr Robin, 60, who became the first joint director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough in 2015, had been due to retire in January. However, she delayed her retirement plans to continue to lead public health through the challenging winter period.
Jyoti will begin her new role on July 1. Dr Hugo van Woerden will be acting as joint interim director of public health from May for both authorities until then.