THE chief executive and general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, Dr Peter Carter, paid a special visit to staff at Stroud General Hospital recently.
Dr Carter accepted an invitation from Rosi Shepherd, locality manager at Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust, to meet nurses at the hospital and lead a questions and answers session.
After taking a tour of the hospital's clinical departments and chatting to nurses and other healthcare professionals, Dr Carter gave a presentation to staff from across the trust before taking questions from the floor.
"In my role it is important to get out and see our nurses in action and I thoroughly enjoyed the tour," he said afterwards.
"Staff spoke openly about how much they love their jobs. Care and compassion are essential characteristics for a nurse and I saw this in the departments I visited.
"With an ageing population community nursing is becoming even more important than ever and so it is essential we get it right."
Carol Grimsdale, matron at Stroud General Hospital, said: "The afternoon was a real success, and it was great for staff to meet Dr Carter and to give him a tour of our facilities.
"To have such a prestigious leader of nursing join us to listen and share in the issues nurses face every day, and reinforce the value of a nurse’s role, was a real reminder of why we do what we do."