Shetland nurse Clare Stiles has been awarded the title of Queen’s Nurse – the first time the honour has been made in Scotland for almost 50 years.
Ms Stiles is the team leader for child health and was one of 20 to get the title. She was selected earlier this year to take part in a nine-month development programme run by the Queen’s Nursing Institute Scotland (QNIS).
She oversees a group of health visitors, school nurses and children’s nurses looking after all children across the Islands.
“I want our nursing to be excellent,” said Ms Stiles. “To be the very best it can possibly be, and to make a difference to people’s lives.
“Being a Queen’s Nurse is challenging me to think about how I achieve that, and pushing my boundaries creatively.
“It’s been an incredible experience and I feel it’s been a real honour to be selected for the QNIS programme. It has taken me on a momentous journey of learning which I look forward to sharing with my team who have supported me throughout.”
She is keen to attract new nurses to Shetland, acting as an ambassador to inspire them.
After completing the QNIS programme she has earned the right to use the Queen’s Nurse title which dates back to the late 19th century when nurses trained at institutes across Scotland until 1969.
She is among 20 community nurses that were presented with a certificate and badge by Great British Bake Off judge Prue Leith during the QNIS awards ceremony in Edinburgh on Friday.
Others within the group to receive the title include a midwife caring for asylum seeking mothers in Glasgow, a nurse in police custody, practice and district nurses, school nurses, a mental health nurse, a care home and a parish nurse.
Clare Cable, chief executive and nurse director of QNIS, said: “These 20 exceptional individuals can be deservedly proud of being awarded this prestigious title.
“From the late 1880s, Queen’s Nurses were social reformers who were taking public health into people’s homes to help families take better care of themselves. The modern Queen’s Nurses are building on this proud heritage – sharing this pioneering spirit to improve the health and wellbeing of the communities of Scotland.”