Engaging with 10,000

Jane Cummings, NHS England’s Chief Nursing Officer, has reached a milestone number of followers to her Twitter account. Here she talks about why social media is so important:

Everywhere we look in the healthcare system there are numbers.

It seems we are always measuring data and figures to ascertain the worth, the value or the efficiency.  Some of the numbers we collate are valuable and some we attribute more importance than they are worth.

I recently reached 10,000 Twitter followers which is a significant number, although it’s important to remember that this isn’t about numbers but about individuals.  Each and every follower creates the opportunity for positive and valuable engagement that enables me to communicate, listen, learn and share within an energetic community of nurses, other professions and a much wider community.

To be a nurse in such a visible and open forum such as Twitter takes not only courage but also a high degree of professionalism.  We are using Twitter to connect and support each other in so many ways; the exchange of nursing experience, ideas and expertise is commonplace but it is the celebration of nursing that makes our Twitter community so very special.

I see tweets daily that tell of student nurses qualifying, nurses celebrating the day they qualified, nurses talking about how they made a difference that day and nurses and midwives sharing their passion for our profession.

Twitter has given us the opportunity to communicate beyond hierarchies and geographical locations. It is the tweeting community that has actually made this happen, each and every individual and their commitment has created this space for sharing.

The 6Cs Live! discussions hosted by WeNurses is a great example of this. Nurses coming together to share their experiences and knowledge around the 6 Action Areas of Compassion in Practice.  It’s wonderful to hear about the action that nurses, midwives and others are taking to embed the 6Cs into practice and how they are using the 6 Action Areas to achieve this.

Twitter allows me to communicate and engage with so many different people, to understand their perspectives and to be a part of the community. 10,000 is a number but it’s the 10,000 individuals that matter, the 10,000 opportunities to connect, the 10,000 opportunities to share and the 10,000 opportunities to learn.

I will do my best to engage more and contribute more to such a wide and wonderful community.

  • Jane Cummings will be talking with Dr Kate Granger, specialist registrar, cancer patient and campaigner, about compassion and care at the Innovation Expo at Manchester central on March 4. For more information go to: and follow all the news as it happens on Twitter @NHSExpo and #Expo14NHS.
  • Follow Jane Cummings on Twitter at: @JaneMCummings



Jane Cummings

Professor Jane Cummings is the Chief Nursing Officer for England and Executive Director at NHS England.

Jane specialised in emergency care and has held a wide variety of roles across the NHS including Director of Commissioning, Director of Nursing and Deputy Chief Executive.

In February 2004, she became the national lead for emergency care agreeing and implementing the 98% operational standard. She has also worked as the nursing advisor for emergency care. In January 2005, she was appointed as the National Implementation Director for ‘Choice’ and ‘Choose and Book’.

Jane moved to NHS North West in November 2007 where she held executive responsibility for the professional leadership of nursing, quality, performance as well as QIPP, commissioning and for a time Deputy Chief Executive Officer. In October 2011, she was appointed to the role of Chief Nurse for the North of England SHA Cluster.

She was appointed as Chief Nursing Officer for England in March 2012 and started full time in June 2012. Jane is the professional lead for all nurses and midwives in England (with the exception of public health) and published the ‘6Cs’ and ‘Compassion in Practice’ in December 2012, followed by publishing the ‘Leading Change, Adding Value’ framework in May 2016.

Jane has executive oversight of maternity, patient experience, learning disability and, in January 2016, became executive lead for Patient and Public Participation.

She was awarded Doctorates by Edge Hill University and by Bucks New University, and she is a visiting professor at Kingston University and St George’s University, London.

She is also Director and trustee for Macmillan Cancer Support and a clinical Ambassador for the Over the Wall Children’s Charity where she volunteers as a nurse providing care for children affected by serious illnesses.

Follow Jane on Twitter: @JaneMCummings.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

One comment

  1. formerrmn says:

    So why do so many trusts forbid staff from commenting about anything to do with their employment without the approval of the trust corporate service department or similar?

    I have only been able to comment about things to do with nursing or my employment since I have been out of work.