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New chief nurse joins Barking, Havering and Redbridge

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Kathryn Halford has become the new chief nurse at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust in Essex.

She was previously at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust where she was the executive lead for the nursing, midwifery and therapist workforce.

Ms Halford takes over from Wendy Matthews, the trust’s director of midwifery, who was acting as interim chief nurse.

Speaking on her new post, she said: “I was attracted here because it’s a really exciting place to work. In my previous role I did a lot of work on patient experience and supporting patient care, and those are skills which I can bring with me.

“This organisation has a clear strategy and direction of travel which I think is really helpful. And the way we are investing in and transforming healthcare services is very exciting,” she said.

The trusts noted that her key priorities would include ensuring nursing staff are clear on their responsibilities to provide “excellent care to every patient”, as well as working with patients and families to ensure the healthcare provided “fits the needs of the community”.

Ms Halford added: “I want everyone to understand the difference their contribution makes, and how they can maximise it.”

Last July the Care Quality Commission recommended that the trust should remain in special measures, despite making “real” improvements. It was placed in the support scheme for struggling NHS providers in December 2013.

The CQC inspectors found that the trust had made “significant progress” since the last comprehensive inspection in October 2013, but gave the organisation an overal rating of “requires improvement”.


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