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Paula Gardner to be new Chief Nursing Officer for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust

The Chief Executive of the Trust which manages the Alexandra, Kidderminster and Worcestershire Royal Hospitals has welcomed the appointment of a new Chief Nursing Officer to the Trust Board.

After a competitive recruitment process Paula Gardner has been announced as the new Chief Nursing Officer for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust. She takes up her role in March 2021 to allow a short handover before the Trust’s current Chief Nurse, Vicky Morris, retires.

Trust Chief Executive Matthew Hopkins says: “Paula’s appointment is excellent news for our Trust. She is a highly experienced, well respected and popular nursing leader who I am sure will build on the many improvements to the quality and safety of our patient care that have been achieved during Vicky’s time here.

“Paula brings to our Trust extensive experience both in high performing and highly challenged trusts. Among the many things which impressed us about her during the recruitment process was her obvious passion for putting patients first as well as her commitment to providing highly visible, accessible leadership to nurses, midwives and allied health professionals.” 

Paula Gardner was most recently Chief Nurse at Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust and before that she was Chief Nurse at Burton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – but her nursing career began in Worcester where she was a student nurse and her first job after qualifying was at the former Ronkswood Hospital on Newtown Road in 1986.

She says: “It is great to be coming back to Worcestershire and I am excited to be joining the Trust’s senior leadership team at such a challenging but also exciting time for our NHS locally and nationally. The Trust has shown that even in the midst of a pandemic, it has continued to focus on providing the safest, highest quality care for patients and that is a real tribute to staff across all wards and departments.  

“I am looking forward to meeting my new colleagues and getting the chance to play my part in helping the Trust deliver even more improvements to patient care while also making sure we provide all our staff with the support, encouragement and protection they need to do their jobs to the very best of their ability.”

Chief Nurse Paula Gardner