Professor Mark Radford CBE is the Chief Nurse for Health Education England and Deputy Chief Nursing Officer for England.
Mark was appointed interim Chief Nurse at HEE in October 2019, before the position was made permanent during the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, in March 2020. Mark has been leading HEE’s response to the crisis, ensuring nursing and midwifery students are given the opportunity to support frontline colleagues, and have access to the information and support they need. Mark is responsible for ensuring the nursing and midwifery workforce has the right numbers, skills, values and behaviours, as part of HEE’s support for over 150,000 students in a range of healthcare disciplines – including doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, physiotherapists and many more roles. Mark has recently taken up leadership nationally of the Workforce and Training work of the COVID-19 NHS vaccination delivery program.
As Deputy Chief Nursing Officer for England, Mark supports the Chief Nursing Officer in ensuring the NHS workforce is fit for the future. This includes recruitment and retention, skills development, maintaining the quality of management and leadership, tackling inequality and breaking down barriers, ensuring places of work are rewarding, positive and filled with opportunity, and enabling more volunteers to support front-line staff.
Mark’s focus on education and healthcare have overlapped since his own graduation, in 1994. He has held full-time clinical roles at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire. He was a nurse consultant for 10 years, with a focus on trauma, perioperative and emergency care, before being appointed Director of Nursing for Surgery in 2009 and, subsequently, Chief Nursing Officer and Executive Director.
Throughout his clinical career, Mark has maintained his academic interests. He has been involved in multiple research projects looking at the roles of nursing in advanced practice, gender disparity and pay, as well as big data analysis of nursing and retention, among others. He has also published five books on emergency and perioperative surgery throughout his career.
Recently, Mark has been working on a major research project with Dr Sarahjane Jones, Staffordshire University Associate Professor from the School of Health and Social Care. The project, which is part-way through data collection, is looking at retention of NHS nurses and ways to improve outcomes for students. Mark is also Professor of Nursing at Birmingham City and Coventry universities, where he teaches on undergraduate and postgraduate courses, supports research projects and works on blended learning techniques.
Professor Mark Radford, who helped lead the recruitment of vaccine staff and volunteers in his capacity as England’s Deputy Chief Nursing Officer during the COVID pandemic, was honoured with a CBE in Her Majesty The Queen’s New Year Honours 2022 list.
The Award of Honorary Doctor of Staffordshire University is bestowed upon Mark in recognition of his position as a highly respected and influential healthcare leader. Working at the vanguard of policy and implementation, he has devoted his career to the development of innovative approaches to healthcare, which deliver on both quality and patient safety. The award also acknowledges his role in pioneering non-physician services within the fields of perioperative care and surgical assessment.