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New Chief Nurse to take up her role

Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust’s (NSFT) new Chief Nurse has pledged to help drive further improvements to patient care when she takes up her position later this week.

Diane Hull will start work at the Trust on Wednesday (21 November). She joins NSFT from Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, where she has played an instrumental role in supporting the organisation to move from a CQC rating of “requires improvement” to “good”, with an “outstanding” rating in the caring domain.

A qualified mental health nurse, Diane brings with her extensive experience of frontline care and a proven track record of making significant improvements. At NSFT, she will be responsible for boosting safety and the experience which service users have when accessing care, as well as enhancing the way learning is shared across the Trust when incidents occur and helping to address vacancies in the nursing workforce.

“I am really looking forward to getting started and helping create the right conditions and culture so that we can make the necessary changes to improve mental healthcare for everyone in Norfolk and Suffolk,” said Ms Hull, who has more than 30 years’ experience of working in the NHS. “Everyone I’ve met so far has been warm and engaging, and really want to make things better for service users, carers and staff.

“I am completely patient-focused and want to hear from as many different patient groups, carers, staff and communities as possible so that we can really understand what they feel we are doing well and where we could further improve. 

“It will also be vitally important for us to make sure our services are safe and start being creative and finding innovative ways of working to benefit service users.

“All trusts are also facing a real problem with recruitment and retention. At NSFT, we need to make sure we are offering something really exciting which enthuses people. Most importantly, we also need to look after our existing staff, make sure we truly value them and show them the appreciation they deserve for their dedication to what, at times, can be a difficult job.

“I’m realistic and recognise that there will be challenges ahead as well as opportunities, but am looking forward to getting settled in and cracking on.”

Earlier this summer, NSFT recruited Stuart Richardson as its new Chief Operating Officer and Duncan Forbes as Director of Human Resources and Organisational Development. Ms Hull’s appointment takes the Executive Team up to full strength.

Antek Lejk, Chief Executive, said: “We are really pleased to welcome Diane as our Chief Nurse. We look forward to working with her to make long-term, sustainable changes which will make a real difference to our service users and their carers.”

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