Posted on Wednesday 31 December 2014
Eileen Sills, Chief Nurse recognised in Queen’s New Year Honours
Eileen Sills, Chief Nurse at Guy’s and St Thomas’, has been made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen’s New Year Honours.
This recognises Eileen’s services to the nursing profession since she qualified as a registered nurse in 1983.
The honour is reserved for those who make a major contribution in their field, usually at national level. Other people working in the field will see their contribution as inspirational and significant, requiring commitment over a long period of time.
Eileen, who has been Chief Nurse at Guy’s and St Thomas’ since 2005 and also Director of Patient Experience since 2012, says: “This is the most amazing honour, I can’t quite believe it. I have had an amazing 10 years at Guy’s and St Thomas’ and I would like to thank all the staff who work here because this recognition would not have happened without them.”
Ron Kerr, Chief Executive of Guy’s and St Thomas’, says: “We are all immensely proud of Eileen’s recognition in the Queen’s New Year Honours. It is a well-deserved honour for her transformational leadership of not only the nursing workforce but all staff across the organisation, whatever job they do and wherever they work.
“Eileen is passionately committed to improving the experience of every patient treated in our hospitals and in our community services. The example that she sets as a highly visible nurse leader is an inspiration to all of us, myself included.”
Eileen has a national reputation for strong, visible clinical leadership including her introduction of Clinical Fridays – increasing the amount of time that senior nurses spend on the frontline – and the weekly Safe in Our Hands forum where nurses and other staff share successes and challenges to improve patient care.
She was the driving force behind the development of the award-winning ‘Barbara’s Story’ training film to raise staff awareness of dementia – all 13,500 Guy’s and St Thomas’ staff have seen the film and it has been viewed more than 20,000 times on YouTube.
Earlier this month Eileen trained Prime Minister David Cameron and members of the Cabinet to be ‘dementia friends’. Her training included a screening of ‘Barbara’s Story’. She has also been the Clinical Director of London’s Strategic Network for Dementia since August 2013.
Eileen’s leadership of a staff ‘listening exercise’ at Guy’s and St Thomas’ following publication of the Francis Report into failings at Mid Staffordshire Hospital was recognised as an example of best practice in staff engagement in the Government’s official response to the report.
Having trained in Stockport, Eileen moved to London in 1985 where she took up her first senior position as a Sister in A&E at North Middlesex Hospital – she quickly rose up through the ranks to fill Director of Nursing roles at both the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital and Whipps Cross Hospital.
She was awarded the CBE in 2003 and she holds two visiting professorships at King’s College London and London South Bank University.
Eileen, 52, is married to a GP and lives in Stoke Newington, north London. She has two daughters – her elder daughter is a qualified nurse and her younger daughter is a professional tennis player.
- Dr Hilary Cass has received an OBE for services to child health in the New Year Honours. She is a consultant paediatrician in Evelina London Children’s Hospital, specialising in paediatric neurodisability, and President of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health.
- Professor Peter Braude, Emeritus Professor of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at King’s College London and former Director of the Assisted Conception Unit at Guy’s and St Thomas’, received an OBE for services to reproductive medicine in the New Year Honours.