Voluntary Sector: RCN calls in Egan to beef up media relations work

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has appointed former Medical Research Council chief press officer Sarah Egan as head of media.

Egan said part of her remit was to look at RCN campaigns with a longer-term view, ensuring they were 'followed up, monitored and moved along'.

'The media team has done a great job of promoting the RCN and nursing as a profession to date, but taking a more strategic view would complement this day-to-day media work,' she added.

Activity will include campaigns targeted at the nationals and broadcast media. Egan is also responsible for raising the profile of chief executive Beverly Malone.

'Although Beverly already has a good media profile, I will look at ways of raising that through broadcast media and try to get her longer exposure on programmes, rather than just quotes in the press,' Egan said.

The RCN is the largest professional union of nursing staff in the world.

Egan said that her experience as PR manager at the Royal College of General Practitioners would help her to work on ways of making sure the Government addresses the concerns of its 370,000 members.

'The RCN has a strong lobbying team and will continue to push for better pay and conditions,' said Egan. 'But we will also be emphasising to the public that nurses' concerns about things such as eliminating MRSA and banning smoking benefit patients, too.'

Egan replaces Eileen Philips - who has moved over to a similar role at the General Medical Council - and will report to RCN head of communications Amanda Gallagher.

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