New associate director joins our research leadership team | News

New associate director joins our research leadership team

This month, CPFT welcomes Rasha DeMarco as the newly appointed Associate Director of Research and Development to lead on operational delivery and grow the Trust’s research portfolio.

Rasha joins us from the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) Clinical Research Network at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust, where she spent the last eight years managing the delivery of clinical research in the North West London region. Rasha has worked across primary, secondary, mental health and community healthcare settings, as well as the London Ambulance Service.

Rasha (photo) said: “I am very excited to join CPFT and look forward to working with the team to realise their vision of offering everyone the opportunity to take part in studies. Research is essential to develop effective therapies and deliver the best services and care, and I hope to continue building on the excellent track record of this research active NHS Trust, and our partnerships to make this happen. I’m really impressed by the research staff and Trust services I have met so far, and will be working closely with directorate leads to ensure research serves the areas of greatest clinical need.”

After studying at the University of Sussex and completing a degree (BSc) in Experimental Psychology in 2005, Rasha progressed her path in research with a PhD in Psychopharmacology in 2009, investigating how losartan – a medicine to treat high blood pressure - can affect and change cognition. Findings from this study were published by the international Psychopharmacology journal. Following this PhD, Rasha embarked on a career in clinical research delivery, working in the private sector initially before joining the NHS in 2011 where she has held multiple research management roles across Essex, Hampshire and London.

Dr Ben Underwood, CPFT’s Research and Development Director said: “I am delighted to welcome Rasha to the Trust’s research leadership team. She brings much experience from other high performing organisations to apply here, has got to grips with things very quickly and is already starting to make an impact! Her role is integral to strengthening and developing our research activity and ensuring that CPFT research is for everyone using our services and every member of staff.”


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