Dame Lesley Regan has today been announced as the first-ever women’s health ambassador for England.
Professor Regan is a professor of obstetrics and gynaecology at Imperial College London, and honorary secretary of the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics.
“Dame Lesley Regan is a good friend of the RCM and a fervent champion for women’s health”
She has had a 42-year career in women’s health, with a particular interest in miscarriage, period problems, gynaecological surgery and menopause.
In her new role, she will support the implementation of the government’s upcoming women’s health strategy for England.
This strategy is intended to tackle the gender health gap and make sure health services meet the needs of women throughout their lives.
Commenting on her new role, Professor Regan said that it was “a great honor” to be appointed as women’s health ambassador for the first government-led women’s health strategy in England.
“This is an important opportunity to get it right for women and girls, and make a real difference to 51% of our population by addressing the inequalities that exist across society,” she said.
“I look forward to working with women, girls, health services, charities, policy makers, the government and other key partners to implement this strategy.”
Chief executive of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), Gill Walton, welcomed Professor Regan’s appointment, saying that nobody was more “skilled, qualified, or suitable” for the job.
“Dame Lesley Regan is a good friend of the RCM and a fervent champion for women’s health, and I heartily welcome her appointment,” she said.
“We must support the health of women better including throughout and after pregnancy. By doing this we can make a significant contribution to improving the health of half of the country, and if we can improve pregnancy care and support, that of their children also.
“I look forward to working with Dame Lesley, and the RCM offers its support to her in this role, and with the implementation and roll-out of the Women’s Health Strategy, which we all eagerly await,” she added.
Chair of the Human Fertilization & Embryology Authority (HFEA), Julia Chain, said: “The appointment of Dame Lesley Regan as the women’s health ambassador has come at an important time and is a clear signal from the government that they are taking women’s health seriously .
“Dame Lesley Regan is a world-class advocate for women and girls, and the HFEA warmly welcomes her appointment.”
She added that the women’s health strategy had the potential to create a step-change for women’s health.
“The HFEA looks forward to supporting the government to drive this forward to ultimately, ensure fertility patients have quick access to high quality care at the right time,” she said.
The women’s health strategy is expected to be published later this year.