Dr Frances Hughes, RN, DNurs, ONZM, FANZCMHN, FNZCMHN

Frances has had 30 years of experience in the New Zealand health service working as a health clinician, manager and educator. Frances is a trained general and mental health nurse. In addition to her nursing qualifications, Frances has a BA, MA and a Doctorate. Frances is a member of many national and international nursing groups, and has held many national positions within New Zealand. Frances has played a major role in leadership in Nursing in New Zealand and was influential in the development of government policy around nurse prescribing, Ministry of Health primary health care & rural scholarship schemes, nursing workforce, nurse practitioners & development of NZ Healthline. Frances also has been influential in the development of Mental Health Nursing both professionally, clinically and educationally over the past two decades. This includes being instrumental in the establishment of a separate professional body of mental health nurses, design and development of both the nationally funded new graduate and advanced mental health nursing programs. Frances held the position of the Chief Nurse for New Zealand for several years. Frances has been involved in international research in areas such as costing nursing turnover, primary mental health, stalking and was on the International Advisory Group for the ANCC for several years.. Frances holds three directorships for New Zealand companies.

Frances, for several years, held the position as the Commandant-Colonel of the Royal New Zealand Army Nursing Core. Frances was awarded the Harkness Fellowship in Health Care Policy in 2001, from Commonwealth Fund in New York. This Fellowship allowed her to study US Health policy, her mentor was Dr Linda Aiken from the University of Pennsylvania, USA.

Frances has been commissioned by governments, WHO and NGOs for work in relation to Nursing, Policy and Mental Health in Australia, South Pacific, UK, Canada and Asia. Frances has been technical consultant for WHO in particular the area of psychosocial emergency response guidelines for Nurses with Dr Margaret Grigg. Frances is known for her innovative style and strategic approaches to health care. Frances held the first Professor of Nursing and the Director of the Centre for Mental Health Policy, Research and Service Development at the University of Auckland. From 2006-2011 Frances worked as the facilitator for WHO/WPRO Pacific Island Mental Health Network, in this role Frances travelled and worked with 16 pacific island country governments supporting them to develop public policies and plans to improve mental health of their populations. Frances established a successful consultancy company in which her and her team undertook both national and international service and policy evaluation work. Frances has held many government positions in New Zealand the last being as Acting Deputy Director of Mental Health.

Frances is a fellow of the New Zealand College of Mental Health Nurses and the Australian College of Mental Health Nurses. Frances received a Queens Birthday Honour for 2005, and was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) for her services to Mental Health. Frances has been recognised for her scholarship and research through gaining the award of being one of the authors of one of the Top 10 cited papers (2006-2008) published in International Journal of Nursing Studies.

In 2012 Frances received a New Zealand Fulbright Senior Scholar Award to undertake research in the USA 2012/2013 on Post disaster lessons as they apply to health professionals.

Frances has published widely in referred journal on areas of nursing turnover & workforce, primary mental health, policy, nursing leadership & psychosocial emergency response. Frances is on the editorial board of 4 international mental health and nursing journals. In 2007 Frances released her first book titled Have your say- influencing public policy.

Frances is currently employed as Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer, Department of Health (Queensland), Australia.