The Arthritis Foundation of SA (Arthritis SA) today announced the appointment of Adjunct Associate Professor Steve Morris as its new Chief Executive Officer.

Adj A/Prof Morris has an extensive track record delivering innovative initiatives to improve healthcare in Australia and the UK.

“We are very fortunate to have someone of Steve Morris’ calibre and experience step into this leadership role at Arthritis SA,” said David Waterford, President. “We are at a critical moment in our 46-year history. Renewed leadership is central to successfully implementing our strategy, meeting the challenges ahead and taking advantage of the opportunities before us.”

“Arthritis SA not only wants to broaden and grow its work to reduce the social and economic burdens of arthritis, which affects 1 in 4 South Australians,” Waterford said. “Under Steve’s leadership, our aspiration is for South Australia to be national leaders in the approach to arthritis. With Steve’s experience as a health services innovator and his proven track record in delivering outcomes we believe this is achievable.”

Commenting on the appointment, Adj A/Prof Morris said, “I am honoured and excited at the prospect of leading Arthritis SA. It is an organisation with a proud history and enormous potential. I look forward to working with members, partners and stakeholders to explore how we can further expand the reach, influence and impact of Arthritis SA in its critical work on behalf of South Australians living arthritis and related conditions.”

Arthritis SA is a membership-based, charitable organisation dedicated to reducing the social and economic burdens of arthritis. It does this by funding research, providing education and support, and creating awareness about arthritis. Over the past 6 years Arthritis SA has allocated more than $1 million to research. More education and support services are being offered, including a new hydrotherapy program.

Steve Morris has worked in numerous clinical and leadership roles in the health sector, spanning pharmacy practice, community and hospitals, primary care, industry and NGOs. He comes to Arthritis SA having been CEO NPS MedicineWise since 2018, which promotes the safe and wise use of medicines and other health technologies. Prior to this Steve was accountable for the delivery of statewide pharmacy services to the public sector in South Australia, holding dual roles as Executive Director SA Pharmacy, and Chief Pharmacist for SA Health. Originally from the UK, Steve was deputy chief executive of the National Prescribing Centre. He was appointed an adjunct professor at the University of SA in 2018.

Steve replaces the acting CEO, Vicki Toovey, who has filled the role since December 2020. Vicki will remain as acting CEO until Steve commences on 2 August 2021. “On behalf of the Board and staff, I thank Vicki for her support during this transition” Waterford said.