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Inspirational leader of nurse innovation set to retire

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Professor Rachel Munton is to retire at the end of July following a 38-year career in the NHS that began as a healthcare assistant.

She has worked at every level from HCA to director of nursing, and ultimately in an array of regional and national positions that contribute to strategic health innovation.

In 2014 she was highlighted as one of the 50 most inspirational women in the NHS by Nursing Times’ sister title Health Service Journal.

Professor Munton is currently managing director of the East Midlands Academic Health Science Network (EMAHSN), based in Nottingham.

It is one of is one of 15 academic health science networks in England that are intended to speed up the identification and spread of innovation.

“Rachel has committed her entire career to improving services for patients”

Martin Hindle

They were set up by the NHS to build partnerships between NHS organisations, social care, public health bodies, universities, third sector and healthcare industry.

Professor Munton joined EMAHSN in 2013 and has been credited with being instrumental in setting up the organisation and building collaboration between England’s 15 such networks.

EMAHSN’s chair, Martin Hindle, paid tribute to Professor Munton, saying she had “committed her entire career to improving services for patients”.

“As a result of her hard work and passion, she will be leaving a robust and sustainable organisation with a dedicated team and a strong reputation for driving health service transformation,” he said.

He added: “We are now starting our search for a new inspirational, creative and skilled managing director who will lead us into the future – bringing health organisations together to address shared challenges and support them to achieve their priorities for local people.”

Professor Munton’s career:

  • Managing director, East Midlands Academic Health Science Network (2013-16)
  • Director of collaboration for leadership in Applied Health Research & Care (CLAHRC) Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire & Lincolnshire (2011-13)
  • Director of the East Midlands Leadership Academy (2009-2013)
  • Interim director of nursing with NHS East Midlands (2010-11)
  • Executive director of nursing and Allied Health Professionals at Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust (2006-09)
  • Chair of the Equality and Human Rights Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity Group for the UK Department of Health (2004-08)
  • Interim deputy chief executive of the Mental Health Act Commission (2005-06)
  • Director of mental health nursing at the Department of Health (2002-03)
  • Course director at the School of Nursing, University of Nottingham (1996-2000)
  • Nurse Teacher, Sister / Charge Nurse Development Programme and other teaching roles at the Nottingham School of Nursing and Midwifery (1991-94)
  • Clinical manager, Community Mental Health, Nottingham Mental Health Trust (1989-91)
  • Nursing roles at Nottingham City Hospital and Nottingham Mental Health Trust (1982-89)
  • Student adult nurse at the Nottingham School of Nursing and Midwifery (1978-82)
  • Healthcare assistant at Lincolnshire Rauceby Hospital (1978-79)
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