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Fiona McQueen announces her retirement as chief nursing officer

Image credit: Holyrood

Fiona McQueen announces her retirement as chief nursing officer

Scotland’s chief nursing officer (CNO) has announced she will retire from the role in June, just months after she was appointed chair of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s oversight board.

Fiona McQueen joined the Scottish Government as interim CNO in November 2014, after serving as NHS Ayrshire and Arran’s executive nurse director for 15 years, and prior to that executive nurse director at NHS Lanarkshire. She was officially appointed Scotland’s CNO in March 2015.

In November, she was announced as chair of the NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde oversight board, after it was placed under special measures over “ongoing issues relating to infection prevention, management and control” at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman told Holyrood McQueen would “continue to lead on work around the escalation of NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde over hospital acquired infection in the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital and the delay to the new Royal Hospital for Children and Young People in Edinburgh”.

“Plans for a successor to this work will be put in place ahead of her retirement,” Freeman said.

Announcing her decision to step back on Twitter over the weekend, McQueen wrote: “I am moving on to a new chapter in my life – stepping down from being CNO – there is now an amazing opportunity for someone to take up the position.”

She described the CNO position as “a wonderfully fulfilling opportunity to lead the profession”.

Freeman paid tribute to McQueen, saying she had made “a significant and valuable contribution as chief nursing officer over the past five years”.

“In her time Fiona has provided consistent leadership to the professions including important work to widen participation into nursing and promote a more inclusive approach for those wanting to enter the profession,” she said.

“As Scotland’s most senior nurse she has led innovative work on quality improvement in nursing and midwifery across Scotland and has provided leadership for Scotland’s new comprehensive safe staffing law.

“She has been an exemplary CNO and I want to wish her all the very best for her retirement when it comes at the end of June. The process to appoint a new chief nursing officer is now underway.”

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