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Nurses recognised with New Year Honours

Nurses recognised with New Year Honours

Nurses and other health professionals are among more than 1,200 people who have been recognised for their ‘exceptional achievements’ in the King’s New Year Honours list for 2024.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) said recipients ‘embody the extraordinary professionalism, innovation, dedication and expertise’ shown by nurses every day.

And the nursing regulator said it was ‘wonderful to see some of the leading lights and unsung heroes’ of the profession recognised for their vital contributions.

The New Year Honours recognises those who have ‘made achievements in public life’ and ‘committed themselves to serving and helping the UK’.

Among those awarded was Debbie Brown, an advanced nurse practitioner and clinical director at Lewisham Community Education Provider Network Training Hub, who was awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to nursing and the NHS in London.

Former president of the RCN Dr Denise Chaffer, who was also lately director of safety and learning at NHS Resolution, was awarded a Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for services to patient safety in Surrey.

Former chief nurse and currently interim chief executive at East London NHS Foundation Trust, Lorraine Sunduza was also awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to mental and community health in London.

Ms Sunduza said she was ‘humbled and delighted’. ‘The honour for me is actually being chosen for the things that I am passionate about,’ she said.

‘I know that I could not have done any of it without the tremendous support that I have from my family, friends, and colleagues.’

In addition, Alison Murray, deputy director of adult social care at the Care Quality Commission and a nurse by background, was awarded an MBE for services to adult social care.

Meanwhile, Debra Viegas, an end of life care Admiral Nurse, was awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to people with dementia and to end of life care in Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

Several other nurses working across community and social care, as well as mental health, specialist and acute nursing were also recognised.

Responding to the news, current RCN president Sheilabye Sobrany said: ‘On behalf of the RCN, I would like to share our warmest congratulations to all of those who have been recognised in the New Year Honours. Your work is truly inspiring and represents the very best of nursing.’

She added: ‘Those recognised embody the extraordinary professionalism, innovation, dedication and expertise shown by nursing staff across the UK every single day.

‘Nursing is one of the most fulfilling careers, unique as both an art and science, with highly educated professionals providing evidence-based care with compassion, empathy, and skill.

‘I am so very proud of the commitment shown by nursing staff all year round to deliver the very best care they can for their patients.’

Meanwhile, chief executive and registrar of the Nursing and Midwifery Council Andrea Sutcliffe, said: ‘As we reflect on another challenging year for health and social care, and look ahead to 2024, it’s wonderful to see some of the leading lights and unsung heroes of our professions across the four nations recognised for their vital work over many years.’

Posting on social media site X (formerly Twitter), Dame Ruth May said she was ‘delighted’ to see ‘so many’ nursing and midwifery colleagues honoured.

‘Those recognised have made a huge difference to so many patients, service users, families and colleagues across health and social care,’ added Dame Ruth.

To view the full New Year Honours list click here.

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