Joe Rafferty was appointed Chief Executive of Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust in September 2012. The trust is now one of the largest specialised integrated care providers in the NHS and includes inpatient and community mental health, community physical health, and learning disability and addictions services. During his tenure, he has led a significant expansion of the organisation, almost trebling it in size. This has been accompanied by significant modernisation of the estate and digital infrastructure. For the past five years, Joe has been named as one of the top 50 NHS Chief Executive’s by the Health Service Journal (HSJ) and has appeared in the HSJ100 most influential people in healthcare in the UK. He is a founder member of the Zero Suicide Alliance UK and was named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the New Year’s Honours List 2020 for his work on suicide prevention.
Joe was awarded a Ph.D. in molecular genetics at Queen’s University Belfast in 1987, he spent the next twelve years researching drug resistance in cancer and published over fifty peer review articles on this and related areas, before a career change. He was made an Honorary Professor at the University of Liverpool Institute for Population Health Sciences in March 2021