Helena is working on a portfolio of interests having retired from her role as Chief Executive of the British Lung Foundation. She is the Chair of 2020 Health, an independent health think-tank, and a non-executive director of the NHBC (National House Building Council).

Previously Helena was Chair of the Audit Commission, a member of the Competition Commission, Deputy Chairman of the Local Government Commission for England, a member and Chair of the National Lottery Commission, and a board member of the Energy Saving Trust. She chaired the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux and was a trustee of the RAF Benevolent Fund.

In 2011 Helena was awarded the British Thoracic Society medal for exceptional service to respiratory medicine - the first non-medic to be so honoured.