Andrea Sutcliffe to step down as NMC Chief Executive due to ill health

Published on 22 May 2024

Andrea Sutcliffe CBE is to step down as Chief Executive and Registrar of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) due to ill health.

Having suffered a fall last month, Andrea had a scan which unexpectedly revealed a tumour requiring neurosurgery in the next few weeks. While the tumour is almost certainly benign and a full recovery is expected, there will be a lengthy recovery period after the operation.

As a result, Andrea has taken the difficult decision to stand down after five years at the helm of the NMC so that she can focus on her recovery.

Andrea said:

“It’s been a great privilege to lead the NMC for the last five years. I’ve been constantly inspired by the amazing work that the nurses, midwives and nursing associates on our register do for people and communities.

“Stepping down has been a difficult decision for me but it may be some time before I’m well enough to fully meet the demands of this job. I’m particularly disappointed that I won’t be here to lead the organisational response to the independent reviews which we have commissioned of our culture and regulatory processes. Whatever the findings and recommendations may be, I’m confident that the NMC and its people will deliver positive change.

“I would like to thank the NMC’s stakeholders for their collaboration on our shared goals over the years, as well as my wonderful colleagues for their consistent hard work and dedication to upholding high standards of nursing and midwifery practice.”

Sir David Warren, Chair of the Council, said:

“On behalf of the Council, I want to pay tribute to Andrea for her leadership of the NMC over the past five years. She has brought immense energy and empathy to her role and an unwavering commitment to maintaining public confidence in the nursing and midwifery professions, coupled with a formidable work ethic.

"Under her tenure, the NMC has delivered new standards for our professions, brought the public voice into our key decisions, and played a crucial role in the national response to the pandemic.

“All of us on the Council will miss Andrea’s absolute dedication to the NMC and determination to work for safe, kind and effective care. We are very sorry that she has had to stand down from her role at this time and wish her well for her full recovery.”

Andrea will step down from her role at the point of her surgery. This is likely to be around the end of June. The NMC will appoint an Interim Chief Executive and Registrar and will advertise for a permanent successor.

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