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New NMC chief executive: ‘I’m going to start by listening’

Education standards overhaul means Andrea Sutcliffe arrives at a key moment for nursing

Education standards overhaul means Andrea Sutcliffe arrives at a key moment for nursing


Andrea Sutcliffe arrives at the NMC from the Care Quality Commission. 

The Nursing and Midwifery Council’s (NMC) new chief executive has promised to be in ‘listening mode’ as she takes up her role overseeing regulation of the profession.

Andrea Sutcliffe joins the regulator today from the Care Quality Commission where she was chief inspector of adult social care.

'Fantastic care – day in, day out'

She said: ‘Over the coming weeks I’ll be in listening mode. Listening to those who receive care and those who advocate on their behalf.

‘Listening to the nurses, midwives and nursing associates who deliver fantastic care day in, day out. And listening to our partners across the health and care sector as we work together to drive high standards and keep people safe.’

‘We need to support nurses, midwives and nursing associates to deliver great care and to encourage learning on the rare occasions things go wrong’

Ms Sutcliffe, who was made CBE for services to adult social care in the 2018 New Year’s Honours added it was a privilege to take on the role at such an important time both for the NMC and health and social care in the UK.

The first nursing associates, whose role has been designed to bridge the gap between healthcare assistants and registered nurses in England, are due to graduate at the end of this month. This coincides with the introduction of the NMC’s long-awaited new standards for nursing and midwifery education on 28 January.

Ms Sutcliffe added: ‘The NMC is constant throughout the careers of nurses, midwives and nursing associates. We need to use that privileged position to support and enable them to deliver great care and to encourage learning on the rare occasions things go wrong.’

Former NMC chief executive Jackie Smith announced her resignation in May 2018 after six years at the helm, and two days before the publication of a report that criticised the NMC’s handling of concerns about midwives at University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.

The Lessons Learned inquiry report from the Professional Standards Authority (PSA) urged the regulator to improve transparency as a matter of urgency.


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