Celebrating 20 years of CHN


More than 150 members gathered at Google HQ to celebrate 20 years of Cambridge Health Network, which held its first event on June 7th 2004 at the Judge Business School in Cambridge.

Several members who were there at the beginning came along to the event. Andrew Ridley couldn’t be with us, so we had a cardboard replica of him on display.

Susan Thomas introduced the evening as our host at Google Health’s HQ. Alex Kafetz acted as MC.  Penny recounted why we set up CHN; Pam and Penny had both worked in the US, came back and decided there needed to be a forum across various parts of the wider health sector in the UK, inviting senior players to join to discuss current topics of the day. 

We have always prided ourselves on access to the best speakers, being able to convene a great group (i.e. our membership) and a fulsome discussion, followed by networking and adding a dash of fun. 

Lawrence Hamilton, now EVP at Kaiser Permanente in California, joined is and reflected on the power of networks and abiding connections, including across countries. Lawrence will be speaking for CHN in late November.

Penny and Pam related memorable moments over the years, many interestingly involving Jeremy Hunt (!) and what issues have endured in health policy, all with a backdrop of photos from our events over the two decades.

We closed our doors in Covid as we didn’t think much of webinars, but roared back into life post-Covid, proving the value of convening in-person meetings 
We also reflected on all the people who have run CHN over the years, from Cambridge PhD students through ZPB to now, Lindsey, who is so terrific, and got a special round of applause. Also huge thanks were offered to all of our sponsors over the years.

Ian Abbs then surprised us with a generous tribute to our Cambridge Health Network and how no one really dares say no to us when asked to speak, help, etc!

Much chat post speakers and as usual many had to be shepherded off the premises at closing time…