New head for leading QUM group

Pharmacy Guild welcomes announcement of Katherine Burchfield as new CEO for NPS MedicineWise

NPS MedicineWise has appointed Katherine Burchfield as its new Chief Executive Officer, commencing on the 18 October 2021.

Ms Burchfield will take over the role from Adjunct Associate Professor Steve Morris, who stepped down at the end of July.

She is currently the Executive Director of Strategy, Services and Innovation, at Royal Far West (RFW).

“Over the past six years, she has led significant growth and innovation across RFW’s multi-disciplinary health and disability services, including establishing Australia’s largest paediatric allied health telecare program,” said NPS MedicineWise.

Katherine Burchfield. Image: Supplied.

Prior to joining RFW, Ms Burchfield was Director of the Integrated Care Branch at the NSW Ministry of Health, leading a large policy portfolio including integrated care reforms, aged care, primary and community care, palliative care, and disability.

She also led the national health policy and research program for the Audit Commission in England and has consulted on multiple international health reform projects.

Dr Andrew Knight, Chair of NPS MedicineWise, said Ms Burchfield is extremely well placed to lead the organisation as it continues to support the quality use of medicines under a refreshed National Medicines Policy.

“NPS MedicineWise has a critical role to play as steward of the quality use of medicines, bringing together healthcare consumers and stakeholders across the sector to make a meaningful difference in an increasingly dynamic healthcare landscape,” said Dr Knight.

“Katherine has a strong track record in leading complex portfolios and multi-disciplinary teams. She enjoys bringing consumer and clinical perspectives together with evidence and commercial acumen, and creating positive work cultures that engage staff and deliver results.

“She is passionate about improving health systems and addressing health inequalities – and has a particular interest in the effective use of information and incentives to support better decisions across the health sector.”

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia welcomed the announcement of Ms Burchfield’s appointment.

Guild National President Trent Twomey said Ms Burchfield would bring expertise and skills to the role to further strengthen the organisation and the important role it plays in Australia’s health system.

“NPS Medicinewise and the Guild have a long and close relationship centred on our mutual commitment to the quality use of medicines for patients across Australia,” Mr Twomey said.

“Her experience, nationally and internationally, in the health sector will add value to NPS Medicinewise’s support for this objective under a refreshed National Medicines Policy.

“Community pharmacists are absolutely critical to the quality use of medicines, and this has been the foundation of the ongoing co-operation and collaboration that has long existed between the Guild and NPS Medicinewise,” he added.

“As the health sector becomes more complex, the importance of such collaboration takes on a new dimension.”

Mr Twomey said that in the increasingly dynamic healthcare landscape, working closely with groups such as NPS Medicinewise helped to ensure better outcomes for patients.

“Patients remain the focus of both organisations,” Mr Twomey said.

“The past year has highlighted just how pivotal community pharmacies are to the health and wellbeing of all Australians and throughout the pandemic and other challenges, the quality use of medicines has remained a principle focus of pharmacists’ work.

“The Guild looks forward to continuing and expanding our ties with NPS Medicinewise under the stewardship of Ms Burchfield.”

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