Sefton chief officer devotes 40 years of service to the NHS

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Fiona Taylor, chief officer at NHS South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, celebrates 40 years in the NHS and encourages others to consider a career in the service.

Fiona joined the NHS on 1 February 1982 as a trainee nurse, aged just 17. She was one of the youngest trainees in her cohort and has since spent her entire adult life working to improve healthcare for patients across the north of England.

After 10 years working in clinical roles, the chief officer recalls how her often emotional experiences with patient care led her to her move into management, so that she could help to influence positive change to benefit her patients and community.

She said: “It was important to me that I helped to make sure the voices of nurses were heard. Their contribution to the NHS is vital and they all deserve a seat at the table.

“I have consistently been a champion of patient voices and will always advocate for them. We enter people’s lives at their greatest times of need, when they are most vulnerable, it is so important to listen and respond to what they need.”

Fiona has had a varied NHS career, beginning in Salford with a variety of clinical roles in nursing, midwifery and health visiting before stepping into management roles from 1992 onwards showing that joining the NHS at a junior level can lead to such a senior position over time.

In 2013 Fiona was appointed as chief officer of NHS South Sefton CCG and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, a role she holds alongside a position as trustee of St Ann’s Hospice in Manchester and as board member at the Advancing Quality Alliance (Aqua).

Reflecting on a successful and rewarding career to date, Fiona hopes to inspire others to join the NHS, whether in patient care, pharmacy, finance or the many other teams that make up such a large and complex organisation.

She commented: “Ultimately an NHS role is about giving back to your community and to our country. It’s a good solid career where you can make a real difference to people’s lives, which is so rewarding.

“There is a real variety of opportunities to be found in the NHS, meaning that many skills people have gained from working in other sectors are transferable. Because of advances in technology there are now even more exciting roles available that did not exist even five years ago.”

Fiona is clearly dedicated to her role and was nominated by her team to win the Inspirational Leader of the Year award at the NHS North West Leadership Academy Awards in 2014. Looking back on her long career the chief officer notes that her current role has been her most challenging position so far, especially over the past two years navigating her team of over 130 staff through the coronavirus pandemic. In recognition of her work during this demanding period, in 2021 she was shortlisted for a Parliamentary Award for her leadership in fostering innovative and patient-centred work around medicines management.

She concluded: “I am very grateful and very privileged to be a part of this organisation and I have always done my best for our patients. I know if I had my time over, I would not hesitate to do it all again.”

If you are considering a role in the NHS, visit the NHS Careers website to find out more about the roles available, hear from other NHS staff about their careers, or take a ‘Find Your Career’ quiz to find your ideal role in healthcare. Visit:

To find out more about the work that Fiona and her team do at NHS South Sefton CCG and NHS Southport and Formby CCG, visit the CCG websites: