By Jessica Wilkinson, Senior Account Executive
We are a fast growing team here at M&F Health and one of our latest new starters is Laura Neff. I decided to catch up with her over a cup of tea so that I could tell you all a bit more about our new joiner.
So Laura, welcome to M&F Health! That’s not a British accent, where are you from originally?
Well I’m originally from Washington D.C., but I grew up in Pennsylvania. I moved to the UK to pursue a PhD in the History of Medicine.
What did you do before that?
Before coming to the UK, I worked as a Legislative and Policy Analyst at the Pharmaceutical Care Management Association (PCMA) in Washington, DC. PCMA is a national trade association representing Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) who administer prescription drug plans for more than 266 million Americans who have health insurance from a variety of sponsors.
What’s been your proudest career moment so far?
I’d have to say my proudest moment was when I testified before the New Hampshire Senate Commerce Committee in 2017.
Wow! Really? Have you noticed much of a different between US and UK public affairs and public relations?
One thing I’ve noticed is that PA and PR are very much combined in the US, whereas in the UK it seems to be the case that they’re often slightly separate activities. Since starting at M&F Health I really like that fact that we combine both PA and PR under one roof and so I’m able to get involved with both in a similar way to that which I’m used to back in the US. Although there’s still a bit of English vocab I’m getting used to!
Definitely, perhaps you can teach us some American colloquialisms to! What do you get up to outside the office since moving to Blighty?
Well, my New Year’s Resolution was to read more as I do love to read! Working on a PhD meant that I was doing so much academic reading that I never had the time to read any other genres. So now I’m looking forward to reading a few more human interest and fiction books, including a few classics from Jane Austen. I just finished the fantastic science fiction book ‘Station Eleven’ by Emily St. John Mandel. Next on my list is ‘Bad Pharma’ by Ben Goldacre and the classic ‘The Victim’ a novel by Saul Bellow. I also enjoy looking after my two 4-year old cats Edward Gibbon (after the historian) and Kiki (a rescue cat). They were special enough to make the journey over from the US with us.