RCN President Anne Marie Rafferty explores the powerful evidence behind the RCN’s call for safe staffing laws across the UK, highlights the remarkable journeys that have led to securing legislation in Wales and Scotland, and issues a call to arms to campaigners following in their footsteps.
Anne Marie grew up in Kirkcaldy in Fife, Scotland, the daughter of a coal miner. She was inspired to enter nursing after listening to the stories of her mother who cared for prisoners of war during World War Two. She did her nursing degree at Edinburgh University before working in vascular surgery at the Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh. It wasn’t long before academia was calling her once more, and she took on a clinical academic role, the first of its kind at the time, in Nottingham, at Queen’s Medical Centre.
Anne Marie later switched fields to study modern history at Oxford University but never left nursing since her thesis was in nurse education policy, later published as ‘The Politics of Nursing Knowledge’. She became the first nurse to get a doctorate from Oxford. She went on to be a lecturer at Nottingham University, before receiving a Harkness Fellowship to be mentored in the United States by pioneering nurse researcher Linda Aiken.
A role as Director at the Centre for Policy in Nursing Research at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine followed (a joint venture with the RCN) before Anne Marie was headhunted to become the Dean of the Florence Nightingale Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery at King’s College London.
Since 2011 she has been Professor of Nursing Policy at King’s College. Her academic research provides evidence to support staffing for safe and effective care, and she has been involved in campaigning with the RCN for legislation in Wales. Now, as RCN President, she has taken on an important leadership role in the UK wide campaign.
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Anne Marie Rafferty, RCN President
Page last updated - 11/12/2019