Ruth Smith talks about her background and why she joined Attain

Ruth SmithTell us a little bit about yourself

I have over 25 years’ experience working in the health sector, both in England and Australia. I began my career as a medical records clerk before moving into site and surgical operational management in Hull, Peterborough and Bedford hospitals. Thereafter I worked as a National Manager implementing the Choose and Book programme across England and supporting primary and acute health organisations in system redesign.

Eleven years ago I moved to Australia to manage the National Medication Safety Breakthrough Collaborative and the Victorian Patient Flow programmes, in addition to leading policy development in relation to emergency and outpatient access in the state of Victoria. Having spent time working at a government level, I was keen to return to a hospital environment, so became Director of Service Transformation at a large metropolitan hospital, during which time I developed and applied a Lean based programme of work. Since then, and prior to moving back to England, I spent four years with the Health, Ageing and Human Services sector of KPMG Australia; this consisted of a variety of projects including system wide service redesign in elective, emergency and outpatient care, implementation of the Dr Foster benchmarking tool, review of a state wide consumer participation policy and support to the global team.

How have your first 30 days been at Attain?

Having combined a move to a new country with a new job, the first 30 days could have been challenging, but the welcome and support I’ve received from the team have definitely made the whole experience easier. I attended the induction and a Service Transformation team meeting within the first few weeks and spent time ‘on the ground’, all of which were great for setting the scene and meeting new colleagues.

In addition I’ve been able to join a project quickly, giving me opportunity to find my feet in a supportive environment.

What attracted you to Attain?

I was keen, on my return to England, to join an organisation with integrity and strong values, aligned to my personal desire to make a difference for patients. Attain ticked all the boxes for me, not only in the approach to developing strong relationships with clients, but also the degree to which everyone supports each other.

What’s the best thing about being employed with Attain?

The company is a breath of fresh air and it’s a pleasure to work for an organisation where everyone truly focuses on making a difference. The opportunity to work with a group of like-minded people, who have a variety of skills and backgrounds and a good sense of humour, is wonderful.

What do you hope the future brings for you with Attain?

I’m excited at the opportunity to contribute to the growth of the company, as it explores new business opportunities, and supporting clients in driving change which will benefit patients.