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Queen honours nurses who treated 'Arab spring' casualties

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Three nurses who gave aid during the Libyan uprising last year were among more than 20 people connected to nursing or midwifery who were named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2012.

They worked at the Oil Clinic in Tripoli, which normally provides clinical services to oil workers and their families.

However, in summer 2011 the 130 bed hospital was caught up in the Libyan civil war and became a centre for treating casualties, sustaining damage from gunfire and shelling.  

Matron Karen Graham, former ward sister Susan Wilkinson and Josephine Hennessy, assistant nursing services manager, all remained in the hospital to offer treatment. They received MBEs for services to nursing and to the community in Tripoli.

Other members of the nursing and midwifery profession recognised in the honours list include leading academics.

Tina Lavender, professor of midwifery at the University of Manchester’s school of nursing, midwifery and social work, becomes a dame, and Kath McCourt, dean of Northumbria University’s school of health, community and education studies, becomes a CBE.

Professor Lavender has worked to raise the profile of midwifery and women’s health through education and research, both in the UK and in Africa. The primary focus of her efforts has centred on the prevention of prolonged labour, which still remains a major cause of mortality.

Speaking of her award, she said: “I am thrilled and deeply honoured to receive this award, particularly as I see it as a real privilege to be a midwife and to be in a position to contribute to improving care for women and their families.”

Professor McCourt, who is also chair of the Royal College of Nursing’s council, said: “I am absolutely delighted to be awarded this honour. Equally, it is wonderful that the nursing profession is being recognised in this way.

“Nursing is an immensely rewarding profession and this award is a reflection of the incredible hard work so many nurses do day in day out to provide the best possible patient care.”

See below for a list of nurses, midwives and other people with links to the profession who received honours:



  • Professor Tina LAVENDER, Professor of Midwifery, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, University of Manchester. For services to Midwifery.


Order of the British Empire - Commanders of the Order of the British Empire (CBE)

  • Professor Hilary MCCALLION, Director of Nursing, South London and the Maudsley. For services to Nursing (Surrey)
  • Professor Kathleen MCCOURT, Dean, School of Health, Community and Education Studies, Northumbria University. For services to Nursing (Tyne and Wear)
  • Ms Lisa RODRIGUES, Chief executive of Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, and former nurse and health visitor. For services to the NHS (East Sussex)


Order of the British Empire - Officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)

  • Cheryl, Mrs DUNN (Ms Cheryl Etches), Director of Nursing and Midwifery, Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust. For services to Nursing (Staffordshire)


Military Division of The Most Excellent Order Of The British Empire – Officer (OBE)

  • Lieutenant Colonel Sharon WOODHOUSE, Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps


Order of the British Empire – Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)

  • Kim, Mrs CARTER, Venous Thromboembolism Nurse Specialist, Portsmouth Hospital NHS Trust. For services to Nursing (Hampshire)
  • Patricia, Mrs CONNELL, Healthcare Assistant, Bradford Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS (West Yorkshire)
  • Professor Kevin DAVIES, Chair of Nursing and Disaster Healthcare. For services to Healthcare Disaster Management (Vale of Glamorgan)
  • Janette, Mrs GILBERT, Senior Charge Nurse, Golden Jubilee National Hospital. For services to Nursing and to Vulnerable People in Ayrshire (Ayrshire and Arran)
  • Ms Karen Wilma GRAHAM Matron, Oil Clinic, Tripoli, Libya. For services to nursing and to the community in Tripoli
  • Miss Josephine Ann HENNESSY, Assistant Nursing Services Manager, Oil Clinic, Tripoli, Libya. For services to nursing and to the community in Tripoli
  • Joy, Mrs JONES, Clinical Lead, Specialist Eating Disorders Service, Aneurin Bevan Health Board. For services to Healthcare (Caerleon, Newport)
  • Miss Rosemary Teresa KOPEČEK, Community midwife. For services to healthcare in Morocco
  • Peggy, Mrs MACLEOD, Nurse Consultant, Diabetes, Western Isles. For services to Nursing and to People with Motor Neurone Disease in Scotland (Western Isles)
  • Marian Anne, Mrs MOUTRAY, Director, Educational Contracts and Business Development, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast. For services to Nursing Education (Antrim)
  • Debbie Mees, Mrs STONE, Specialist Osteoporosis Nurse, Bronglais Hospital, Hywel Dda Local Health Board. For services to Patients with Osteoporosis in Ceredigion (Ceredigion)
  • Miss Fiona Elizabeth TAYLOR, Ward Sister, Edinburgh Cancer Centre, Western General Hospital, Edinburgh. For services to Cancer Nursing and Care in the Lothians (Edinburgh)
  • Mrs Esther Dorothy WALKER Nurse. For services to the development of palliative care in Sudan
  • Ms Susan Mary WILKINSON Lately Ward Sister, Oil Clinic, Tripoli, Libya. For services to nursing and to the community in Tripoli


Order of the British Empire - Medallist of the Order of the British Empire (BEM)

  • George Ernest HEDGES, Secretary and Chairman, Respite Nursing for Oxfordshire’s Sick Youngsters. For services to Sick Children
  • Elaine, Mrs HERD, Nursing Auxiliary, Northern Ireland Hospice. For services to Nursing
  • Sybil, Mrs MOORES, Retired Nurse and Fundraiser, St Peter’s Hospice, Gloucestershire. For services to the NHS and charity (Bristol)
  • Patricia Ann, Mrs SHANNON, Senior Sister, Ulster Hospital Belfast. For services to Nursing and to the Community in Northern Ireland (Down)


Royal Red Cross

  • Chief Petty Officer Kevin WARD (Naval Nurse) Queen Alexandra’s Royal Naval Nursing Service
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