ROS Moore, the Chief Nursing Officer for Scotland, is to step down from the role at the end of the year.
Mrs Moore, who lives in Prestonpans, has held the position since January 2010, before which she was Director of Nursing at NHS Connecting for Health.
The 57-year-old mother-of-three was brought up in West Yorkshire and attended Normanton Grammar School.
After completing her nursing training, she began her career in 1981, dealing predominantly with older people and working in paediatrics and surgery.
She then moved into teaching, training nurses for several years before returning to a management position in the NHS.
She was the first chief nurse for NHS Direct and worked in the Department of Health supporting England’s Chief Nursing Officer, where she is credited with helping to oversee the Modernising Nursing Careers programme – an attempt to update the image of nursing and further develop a competent and flexible nursing workforce.
In 2009 she moved to Edinburgh to take on the role of Chief Nursing Officer for Scotland, based in St Andrew’s House.
In interviews given at the time, she said uprooting the life she had in England to move north of the Border had been “challenging, but absolutely tremendously exciting as well.”
As part of her work in the role she is credited with pushing forward efforts to combat Healthcare Associated Infections (HAI) – contributing to a drop of 84.8 per cent in cases of C Difficile in patients over 65 since 2007.
She also established a review of nursing and midwifery education in Scotland which led to the Setting the Direction strategy, the Scottish Government’s strategic direction for health and social care based on the vision that by 2020 everyone will live longer, healthier lives.
Announcing her decision to step down, Mrs Moore said: “It’s been a privilege to be Scotland’s Chief Nursing Officer and to lead the remarkable people we have in our nursing, midwifery and allied health professions workforce across Scotland.
“Day in, day out, they care for people who are often facing the toughest of times, and I thank each and every one of them for their commitment and professionalism in delivering safe, effective and person-centred care.
“Having begun my career specialising in caring for older people, I have taken special pride in leading improvements to the care of people with dementia and their families in hospitals.”
She added: “Taking the decision to step down was a hard one, as I have really enjoyed the role, but the time is right for me to move on and for a new CNO to be in place to take forward the profession over the coming years.”