Published on: 14 December 2023

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust (ELHT) has strengthened its Board of Directors with the appointment of Melissa Hatch as the Trust’s newest Associate Non-Executive Director.

Melissa has gained extensive senior management experience within the third sector - organisations that are not for profit and non-governmental. Her time at Age Concern, the Royal Voluntary Service and more recently at Citizens Advice, demonstrated her skills in steering organisational strategy, service development, overseeing whistleblowing investigations, and managing stakeholder relationships.

A fervent advocate for equality and diversity, Melissa played a pivotal role in establishing the Windrush Initiatives Community Interest Company. Over her three-year directorship, she collaborated with health, education, housing, and judicial services, addressing inequality and empowering black and multiheritage communities.

Shazad Sarwar, Chair of East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust said: “I am delighted to welcome Melissa onto our Board of Directors and look forward to the contribution she will make in helping us meet the health and care needs of our diverse local population.

“Melissa brings unrivalled third sector knowledge and a wealth of leadership experience that will prove invaluable as the Trust navigates the significant operational and financial challenges alongside our NHS and social care partners in the Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System.”

Melissa took up her new appointment for an initial period of one year, officially commencing on December 1, 2023.

Melissa, new Associate Non-Executive Director, commented: “I’m delighted to join the board of a Trust with outstanding rated services. East Lancashire Hospital Trust has an admirable history of serving its community and patients with compassionate and high-quality care. I’m really looking forward to working closely with the talented leadership team and dedicated colleagues to help guide the Trust's continued success”.