1st Director of Nursing for public health announced

 The top nursing post for public health, which will provide leadership to the workforce and help the public to live healthy lives was announced today by Health Secretary Andrew Lansley.

Professor Viv Bennett has been appointed as Director of Nursing in the Department of Health and the Government’s Principal Advisor on Public Health Nursing. Viv was previously the Deputy Chief Nursing Officer.

This new post will complement the role of Chief Nursing Officer in the NHS Commissioning Board, which will be recruited in the new year. Together these posts will enhance the role of nursing leadership and replace the current role of Chief Nursing Officer (CNO) in the Department of Health.

The Director of Nursing will be accountable to the Director-General of Public Health within the Department, and work closely with ministers and the Permanent Secretary, to ensure public health nursing is central to government policy. Viv will work closely with a range of other national nursing leaders, in particular, the CNO on the NHS Commissioning Board, to ensure a strengthened nursing leadership framework.

Key responsibilities will include:


  • providing high quality and independent nursing advice to the Department and across government on policy issues and public health nursing;
  • leading and coordinating nursing policy development to maximise the contribution of nursing focusing on public health;
  • acting as champion for health improvement on a stage in the life course;
  • providing nursing advice to the development of social care; and
  • providing professional nurse leadership for public health nurses and midwives and for health visitors and developing and extending the public health role of all nurses

Viv will take up her role in the new year.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said:

Good nursing care is a central pillar of public health and strong nursing leadership must be at the heart of both this and understanding cancer.”

“I am extremely pleased that Viv has agreed to take up the post of Director of Nursing and the Government’s Principal Advisor for Public Health Nursing. As an experienced health visitor, Viv will bring her knowledge of public health nursing and her wider experience from the NHS, local and national government to the role. In her current role she has already demonstrated strong clinical leadership of the national health visiting and school nursing programmes.”

Department of Health Permanent Secretary Una O’Brien said:

“I am delighted that Viv is taking on this exciting and challenging role.There is a great opportunity for Viv to establish and develop this role to strengthen the voice of nursing in public health and influence the future direction of public health in general.”

Viv Bennett said:

“I am honoured and excited to have been given this opportunity. As a nurse and a health visitor, I am passionate about the application of nursing and midwifery skills and knowledge to improving and protecting the public’s health.

“This role brings our contribution to the fore. From the start of life giving our children the best start, throughout the life course and in supporting older people to have the best possible health and independence nurses can make really positive impacts on health outcomes. I look forward to working with the professions, our partners and the people we serve to maximise this contribution to improving health and wellbeing.”

First estimates of funding in new health structure

In the future, doctors, nurses and other health professionals could control almost £65 billion of NHS funding, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley announced today

In addition, around £5.2 billion would be spent on public health services. Of this, at least £2.2 billion will go direct to Local Authorities to be spent on action to help their local communities stay as healthy as possible and to reduce health inequalities and will, for the first time, be protected.
The figures were developed by mapping PCT spending in 2010/11 on to the future structure, subject to the passage of the Health and Social Care Bill, and uplifting them to 2012/13 levels.

They estimate that Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) will be responsible for around £65 billion of commissioning expenditure and the NHS Commissioning Board for around £21 billion.Understanding baseline spend is just the first step in establishing future budgets and further analysis will build on this. These figures will help to plan for the distribution of resources in the new system in a way that meets the needs of local populations. They will also support local organisations to plan for the transfer of public health responsibilities to Local Authorities and of commissioning to CCGs.
Emerging CCGs are getting ready for their future responsibilities.

They are already spending nearly £30bn as delegated from Primary Care Trusts – almost half of what we expect they will spend in the future. By April 2012, we want local doctors, nurses and other health professionals to be involved in shaping all spending decisions that they will in future be responsible for.This is important to ensure that emerging CCGs start working on managing their budgets, developing relationships with local partners and playing an active role in planning services for 2012/13, taking ownership for the areas which they will inherit when they become legally responsible for commissioning.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said:

“In the future, we want money to get to where it matters most – to the front line, where it can have the greatest impact on health. We want to give doctors, nurses and other health professionals control of £65 billion to spend on services for their patients and Local Authorities £2.2 billion to help local people to live healthy lives. The health professionals who care for us, and the General Practitioners who look after their local populations, are best equipped to design the shape of local health services. Through the CCGs, they will now have that power.

“There is more work to do, but these estimates mean that Clinical Commissioning Groups and Local Authorities can begin planning how to deliver the frontline services that matter the most.We want to get the best value out of every penny spent in the NHS and our modernisation plans will help to cut waste, reduce bureaucracy and simplify NHS structures so that the money invested will improve frontline care for patients.”

The Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation will publish their formula for allocating resources to clinical commissioning groups and to local authorities for their new public health responsibilities in due course.
First estimates of funding in new health structure

Published on Tuesday, 07 February 2012 15:09
Posted by Scott Buckler
In the future, doctors, nurses and other health professionals could control almost £65 billion of NHS funding, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley announced today

In addition, around £5.2 billion would be spent on public health services. Of this, at least £2.2 billion will go direct to Local Authorities to be spent on action to help their local communities stay as healthy as possible and to reduce health inequalities and will, for the first time, be protected.
The figures were developed by mapping PCT spending in 2010/11 on to the future structure, subject to the passage of the Health and Social Care Bill, and uplifting them to 2012/13 levels.

They estimate that Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) will be responsible for around £65 billion of commissioning expenditure and the NHS Commissioning Board for around £21 billion.Understanding baseline spend is just the first step in establishing future budgets and further analysis will build on this. These figures will help to plan for the distribution of resources in the new system in a way that meets the needs of local populations. They will also support local organisations to plan for the transfer of public health responsibilities to Local Authorities and of commissioning to CCGs.
Emerging CCGs are getting ready for their future responsibilities.

They are already spending nearly £30bn as delegated from Primary Care Trusts – almost half of what we expect they will spend in the future. By April 2012, we want local doctors, nurses and other health professionals to be involved in shaping all spending decisions that they will in future be responsible for.This is important to ensure that emerging CCGs start working on managing their budgets, developing relationships with local partners and playing an active role in planning services for 2012/13, taking ownership for the areas which they will inherit when they become legally responsible for commissioning.

Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said:

“In the future, we want money to get to where it matters most – to the front line, where it can have the greatest impact on health. We want to give doctors, nurses and other health professionals control of £65 billion to spend on services for their patients and Local Authorities £2.2 billion to help local people to live healthy lives. The health professionals who care for us, and the General Practitioners who look after their local populations, are best equipped to design the shape of local health services. Through the CCGs, they will now have that power.

“There is more work to do, but these estimates mean that Clinical Commissioning Groups and Local Authorities can begin planning how to deliver the frontline services that matter the most.We want to get the best value out of every penny spent in the NHS and our modernisation plans will help to cut waste, reduce bureaucracy and simplify NHS structures so that the money invested will improve frontline care for patients.”

The Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation will publish their formula for allocating resources to clinical commissioning groups and to local authorities for their new public health responsibilities in due course.