The National AIDS Trust has announced the appointment of social care expert Dame Denise Platt as its new Chair.

Dame Denise takes up her role as Chair at an important time for the National AIDS Trust (NAT) in the lead up to World AIDS Day 1 December.

She will be succeeding Dame Ruth Runciman, who has served as Chair of the NAT for the past six years and will continue to support the organisation as an ambassador.

Dame Denise brings a wealth of experience to the role, on account of her distinguished career in the social services and health sectors. She was also an early advocate for a comprehensive response to the HIV epidemic, and as Director of Social Services for the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham, oversaw the first HIV policy to be introduced by a local council.

Dame Denise is the Chair of the Commission for Social Care Inspection, a non-departmental Government body responsible for inspecting and assessing the performance of all social care services in England. She is also a member of the National Executive Council of the fpa.

Commenting on her appointment Dame Denise Platt said: “It is a great personal pleasure to take over as Chair of the National AIDS Trust at this time. I look forward to playing my part in helping the organisation to fulfil its mission to prevent the spread of HIV. I would like to pay tribute to the contribution made by Ruth Runciman both as a founder trustee and as Chair, in making the National AIDS Trust the success it is. She is a hard act to follow.”

Dame Ruth Runciman said: “I am extremely proud of the achievements of the National AIDS Trust in the last six years, particularly in challenging stigma and discrimination and campaigning for the human rights of people living with HIV.

I am very pleased to hand over the Chair of the National AIDS Trust to Dame Denise Platt. Denise’s distinguished career and extensive experience in Social Care and health makes her the ideal person to lead the National AIDS Trust in its efforts to get HIV higher up the political agenda and make it a health and social care priority for the UK.”