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Emma Watson Deputy Medical Director

Organisation: NHS Highland

  • Harkness Fellowship
Emma Watson

About me

Emma Watson is a 2021–22 UK Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice.

She is Deputy Medical Director for acute hospital services in NHS Highland, where she led the clinical response to COVID-19 and ensured there was a whole system approach to managing the impact of the virus. She is also a Senior Medical Advisor in the Scottish Government. In both roles, her focus is on developing innovative approaches to ensuring equitable access to high-quality health care services with a sustainable health and care workforce, particularly in remote and rural areas. She has led several major change programmes including the development of Scotland’s first graduate-entry medical school.

She previously held a government post as Clinical Lead for the Scottish Patient Safety Programme, during which she ensured quality improvement methodology translated from the development of health policy and strategy through to implementation across the entirety of the Scottish health care system. As Director of Medical Education in NHS Highland, she focused on the delivery of high-quality medical education as a tool to increase recruitment of doctors to the region and encourage young people from the area to go into medicine themselves.

She is a Consultant Medical Microbiologist by background, and holds an MBChB (First class merits in Surgery and Child Health) and an MSc in Health Services Research and Public Health.

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