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Portsmouth midwifery director named as new head of union

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A director of midwifery at a trust in Portsmouth has been announced as the new chief executive of and general secretary of the Royal College of Midwives.

Gill Walton, who leads maternity services at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust, will take over from outgoing RCM chief executive Cathy Warwick, who retires in August.

Ms Walton qualified as a midwife in 1987 following training at the Princess Anne Hospital in Southampton, and having previously worked as a nurse at University College Hospital in London.

She worked in her first director of midwifery post at Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading in 1999, then went on to lead midwifery at Barking Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust in London and also at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford.

She joined Portsmouth Hospitals Trust in January 2011 and has previously led transformation programmes for maternity services and been involved in projects at a national level.

”I am really looking forward to working with members from all four countries of the UK, to help cement a positive future for midwives”

Gill Walton

Her current wider work includes being involved with NHS England’s Better Births Choice and Personalisation Pioneer Programme – which is testing new ways to improve choice for pregnant women – and setting up a related “local maternity system” in Southampton, Hampshire and Portsmouth.

MsWalton has also previously worked with the RCM, Nursing and Midwifery Council and Department of Health on national policy and strategy development.

gill walton incoming rcm ceo may 2017

gill walton incoming rcm ceo may 2017

Gill Walton

“I am thrilled to have been appointed to the role of chief executive and general secretary for the RCM, an organisation I have tremendous respect for,” said Ms Walton.

“I am really looking forward to working with members from all four countries of the UK, to help cement a positive future for midwives, maternity support workers and maternity services at this time of great change,” she added.

Dr Susan Way, chair of the RCM board said: “I am delighted with the appointment of Gill Walton as the next chief executive of the RCM. Gill has a wealth of experience that will be an asset to the college and I look forward to working with her.”

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