Leading nurse academic Mary Watkins made a peer in the House of Lords

Contributions to nursing, education, social enterprise and housing are recognised

The number of House of Lords peers with a nursing background has increased to five following the appointment of leading academic Mary Watkins.

Professor Watkins is a former deputy vice chancellor of Plymouth University and is currently a governor on its board. She qualified as a nurse in 1976 and worked across mental health settings, providing emergency and non-emergency care, as well as being the inaugural editor of the Journal of Clinical Nursing and also an adviser to the Department of Health.

Professor Watkins will become a Baroness following the announcement yesterday.

She joins nurse peers Lord MacKenzie of Culkein, Baroness Audrey Emerton, Baroness Caroline Cox and Baroness Julia Cumberlege.

Professor Watkins said: ‘I am honoured by this appointment.

'As a nurse I have been driven by the desire to improve patient care; as an academic I aimed to instil that ethos in students, and through my work in mental health and housing I endeavour to ensure that those most in need are considered when developing strategy.

'I promise to go on championing the contribution of nursing and the south west in this new and exciting phase of my life.’


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