Pharmac welcomes a new board member - Dr Margaret Wilsher

Update Kauneke Update

Te Pātaka Whaioranga - Pharmac welcomed Dr Margaret Wilsher to its Board in July 2023.

Dr Margaret Wilsher looks at the camera with a slight smile on her face. She wears black rimmed glasses and a black blazer..

Dr Wilsher has a background in clinical medicine as well as a twenty-year career in medical management with advisory roles across the health sector.

She trained as a respiratory specialist at Greenlane Hospital then completed a research fellowship at the National Heart and Lung Institute and Royal Brompton Hospital in London. Dr Wilsher’s other current roles include Chief Medical Officer of Te Toka Tumai Auckland (previously Auckland District Health Board) and Honorary Professor at the University of Auckland.

We spoke with Dr Wilsher about her goals and ambitions for joining the Pharmac Board.

“I am keen to ensure Pharmac’s decisions deliver benefits to all New Zealanders, especially those who find it hard to access the health system, and for whom there is less support to do so,” says Dr Wilsher. “I want to wear my governance not management hat, and I would like my governance role to be broader than just from a prescriber’s perspective. I also look forward to being fully involved in all aspects of the Board’s work, taking direction from the Chair as to where I can use my skills and experience to add value.”

“It’s the responsibility of the Board to learn from Te Arotake I Te Pātaka Whaioranga (the Pharmac Review) and progress the recommendations from the government response. Also, we must enable the health sector to deliver to Pae Ora. As a public sector board, we are never free from public scrutiny, and we must hold the public and health and disability system’s confidence. We have an enormous responsibility and of course there is a lot of public interest in our decisions.”

“In this role I’m going from representing my patients and persuading Pharmac on their behalf – to putting more focus on the wider medicine and medical device funding process. I feel like I’m crossing a divide! I look forward to the new challenges and opportunities presented to me by being on the Pharmac Board.”

This story is part of our Kauneke Update 

The Kauneke Update will keep you informed on important news and progress towards Te Pātaka Whaioranga – Pharmac's strategic goals. In te reo Māori, kauneke means to develop and move forward.