Professor Deborah Sturdy OBE has been appointed Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care in England.
Professor Sturdy (pictured) will represent social care nurses and provide clinical leadership to the workforce and will work closely with the Minister for Care and Chief Nursing Officer to ensure the provision of high quality, personalised, joined up care.
Minister for Care, Helen Whately, said: “I’m delighted to welcome Deborah Sturdy as our first Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care.
“This is a really important new role – supporting, leading and speaking up for social care and our fantastic care workers.
“This year has shone a light on the commitment of carers across the country. Care staff and nurses have risen to the challenge of providing skilled, compassionate care in the face of the huge challenges of the pandemic.
“The appointment of a Chief Nurse for Adult Social Care is another step towards giving carers the support and recognition they absolutely deserve.”
The role is an interim appointment for up to six months ahead of filling the post on a more permanent basis in 2021.
Professor Sturdy has had a long and successful career in nursing, including working with older people and people living with dementia. Since February 2020, she has worked on secondment for one day a week to the Chief Nursing Officer as strategic advisor for social care nursing.
She has also provided nursing advice to the Gosport Independent Panel, set up to address concerns about the care of residents in Gosport War Memorial Hospital. Before this, Professor Sturdy was employed as Professional Nursing Advisor at the DHSC between 2000 and 2011.
Professor Sturdy said: “I am honoured to have been asked to help define a new narrative for social care nursing and support colleagues to find their voice, and contribute to the development of the workforce in the coming months and work together to deliver the best care possible.
“The social care nursing and care workforce together are a powerful force to help shape and deliver the health and social care agenda. I hope that in this role I will be able to give a voice to those working in social care and develop the workforce, through the difficult months ahead and beyond.”
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, said: “Nurses play a vital role in social care and we are delighted that the Department of Health and Social Care has appointed Professor Deborah Sturdy 0BE as the new Chief Nurse for Social Care. Deborah has extensive experience in social care, and the NHS, and will be a valuable asset to our sector at an incredibly challenging time.”
Vic Rayner, Executive Director, National Care Forum, said Professor Sturdy would be “an excellent champion and advocate of social care nursing, at a point when the nurses within social care are under more pressure than ever before”.