Maria McIlgorm appointed as Chief Nursing Officer for Northern Ireland

Date published: 19 January 2022

Health Minister Robin Swann has announced the upcoming appointment of a new Chief Nursing Officer for Northern Ireland.

Ms Maria McIlgorm will take up the most senior position in nursing in March 2022 having recently worked as a professional advisor within the Scottish Government.

Maria has extensive leadership, management and strategic experience working across a range of acute and community settings within Health and Social care in England and Scotland.

Welcoming Maria to the post, Minister Swann said: “I am delighted to announce Maria McIlgorm as Northern Ireland’s new Chief Nursing Officer.  Maria brings with her a wealth of experience and knowledge that will complement the dedication and professionalism of the nurses, midwives and Allied Health professional across the health and care sector.”

 Ms Maria McIlgorm said: “I am delighted and privileged to be appointed to the Chief Nursing Officer post in Northern Ireland. I was born in Belfast and from a young age have had a close affiliation with here, so this feels like coming home.”

Concluding the Minister said: “ I look forward to Maria joining the team of professionals at the Department of Health and wish her well for the move.  I want to also thank the outgoing interim CNO, Linda Kelly and wish her well for her new post.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. Ms McIlgorm has worked in the NHS for nearly 30 year having initially trained and worked as a general nurse in Drogheda, Co Louth before moving to London to train as a midwife. She spent several years working in London in many different roles prior to moving to NHS Scotland.  In 2003 she was appointed as the Chief Midwife/Nurse for Women’s Services  within the Women’s and Children’s Directorate of NHS Lothian. In 2012 he role was extended to include the Directorate of Neurology and Neurosciences. In 2015 she moved to the role as the Chief Nurse for Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership at the beginning of Health and Social Care Integration in Scotland. More recently she has worked as a Professional Advisor within the Chief Nursing Officer Directorate at the Scottish Government playing a key role in contributing to policy development across Health and Social care.  Maria has extensive leadership, management and strategic experience working across the life span of care within acute and community settings across Health and Social care.
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