Janet Wisely is to step down as Chief Executive of the Health Research Authority. Janet has experienced an unexpected and life changing health situation, which has meant significant adjustments. After careful reflection and discussion with her family and colleagues, she is now stepping down after concluding that she is unlikely to recover the mental or physical stamina that is required for that very demanding role.
The HRA Board fully supports her in making these plans for the future. Its Chair, Professor Jonathan Montgomery said:
It is difficult to do justice to the immense contribution that Janet has made to the good governance of health and social care research. She has been at the centre of its improvement for longer than most of us can remember. On a personal level it has been a privilege to work with her. I admire her dedication to the cause and vision for the future. Janet is an inspiration to staff and has built a foundation for the HRA that will enable us to continue the work she started as she steps back from the Chief Executive role.
Janet Wisely said:
I feel honoured to have been able to lead the HRA and former organisations of the Research Ethics Service and reflect with some pride on achievements over nearly 25 years working in health and social care research. I have so many colleagues to thank and whom I will miss as I step away. I can’t expect to see or keep in touch with all but I will treasure memories of the staff, volunteers, researchers, patients and others who have made the achievements possible and with everybody working together to ensure we have a Health Research Authority which under new leadership will continue to be pivotal in ensuring and improving an effective platform for health and social care research in the UK.
There will be no immediate change to arrangements at the HRA in the short term. Department of Health minister responsible for the HRA, Lord O’Shaughnessy, has confirmed a six-month extension to Teresa Allen’s tenure as interim Chief Executive until November 2017. The HRA Board and the Department will be discussing next steps and information will be communicated as soon as it becomes available.