Macmillan appoints first chief nurse

Karen Roberts says she is thrilled to be taking up the post.
Karen Roberts

Charity Macmillan Cancer Support has appointed its first chief of nursing and allied health professionals (AHPs).

Macmillan's new chief nurse Karen Roberts

Karen Roberts has filled the post, which was created to recognise the part nurses and AHPs play in the charity's work and across wider cancer care.

In 2016, Macmillan nurses supported 626,000 patients with cancer in the UK.

Dr Roberts joins Macmillan from Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust where she was a nurse consultant. She previously worked as a Macmillan clinical nurse specialist in palliative care and gynaecological oncology.

Rising cancer incidence

Macmillan-funded research estimates there are 2.5 million people living with cancer in the UK, which could rise to 4 million by 2030.

The charity has also warned that nurses and AHPs are experiencing increasing levels of stress and are not given the time and space for career development and training.

Dr Roberts said: ‘I have been proud to be a Macmillan nurse for many years and am thrilled to be joining the charity in this new role.'

Macmillan chief executive Lynda Thomas said: ‘Dr Roberts will be there to articulate and represent the concerns of nurses and AHPs at the highest level, so that people with cancer receive the best possible care.'

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