Chief Executive of The Royal Marsden awarded DBE in New Year Honours

Cally Palmer, Chief Executive of The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, and National Cancer Director for NHS England and NHS Improvement, has been awarded a DBE for services to cancer medicine.

27 December 2019

Cally has worked for the NHS for her entire career, and over 21 years as Chief Executive of The Royal Marsden she has worked tirelessly to improve the quality of cancer treatment, care and research for people affected by cancer.

Since October 2015 Cally has also been the National Cancer Director for NHS England and NHS Improvement, leading the implementation of the NHS Cancer Strategy and advising on national strategy for cancer to help save and improve lives through early diagnosis, personalised medicine and equity of care. 

She is also a Trustee of The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and a member of the Board of The Institute of Cancer Research.

Cally said: “I feel incredibly fortunate to work for the NHS and to be surrounded by brilliant teams making great strides in progress for people affected by cancer. My role is simply to enable them, and all our staff, to do what they do best. 

“We’ve seen  exceptional and very significant advances in our knowledge and understanding about better ways of researching, treating and curing cancer in the time I’ve been at The Royal Marsden and it is a joy and a privilege to be able to make these improvements for the benefit of patients in the NHS and worldwide through groundbreaking research.”

Charles Alexander, Chairman of The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Cally has been at the heart of The Royal Marsden for over 20 years, as part of a career’s commitment to the NHS. Her passion to provide the very best treatment and care for patients and to continuously improve survival is admirable and she has set the very finest example for all our staff.”

Rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission, The Royal Marsden is also ranked in the top three Trusts in the country in the CQC Inpatients Survey, achieved some of the best results in the country in the National Staff Survey and was assessed amongst the top Trusts in the country for patient experience for children and young people, according to recent results published by the CQC.