Chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Janet Davies will be stepping down from her role at the end of August, the College has announced.
Ms Davies will be leaving her position as chief executive and general secretary ‘by mutual agreement’, having taken up the role in 2015.
Dame Professor Donna Kinnair, the current director of nursing, policy and practice, will take over as acting chief executive of the RCN.
It follows weeks of backlash from RCN members over the College’s communication of the pay deal in England, after it was discovered that nurses would not receive the full pay rise in their July pay packets.
The College announced that it will ‘await the full findings of a review into the past few months’ events’, before taking an ‘informed decision as to the long-term executive leadership of the organisation’.
Ms Davies said: ‘It has been a great honour to represent my profession at the highest level, and I am proud of the achievements the College has made over the past three years against a difficult political backdrop. I wish my colleagues and our membership all the best for the future, and look forward to taking on some new challenges.’
Maria Trewern, chair of the RCN Council, said: ‘The RCN and Janet Davies have decided to part ways by mutual agreement. We thank her for all her service to the College as chief executive and general secretary over the past three years, and wish her well.’
The resignation follows an apology by Ms Davies in July over the RCN’s communication of information during the consultation period for the pay deal in England.
The RCN had initially claimed that nurses would receive the full 3% uplift in their July pay packets, but this only applied to nurses at the top of their pay band.
Instead, most received an average increase of 1.5%, with the remainder coming on the date of their increment.
Ms Davies apologised, claiming the deal was ‘not as straightforward as we said’.
But it was not enough to prevent a group of nurses on social media successfully calling for an emergency general meeting of Council, after an online petition reached the required 1,000 signatures.