Meet the women of Nuffield Health - Melanie Webber Maybank

To mark International Women’s Day, we have interviewed some of the inspirational women working at Nuffield Health to discuss the challenges women face today and the women that inspired them

Name and role

Melanie Webber Maybank, Matron

Can you tell us about your role at Nuffield Health? 

I am Matron at two of our hospitals in Wales: Cardiff Bay Hospital and The Vale Hospital. The role covers all clinical services in the hospitals and is part of the senior leadership team. 

The scope of work is very varied, and no two days are the same, but what is inspiring about the role is that I still have patient contact and see the impact of the outstanding services we provide to patients every day. There are not many senior roles that keep you close to the patient and allows you to impact patient care to the extent that being a Matron in Nuffield Health does. As Matrons we are also very close to our clinical teams which puts us in a prime position to support and influence them. 

Our patient satisfaction, clinical governance and patient safety is very high, and this is down to the impact the role is able to have on our direct services. It’s what keeps the role interesting and gives us a passion for what we do. 

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

International Women’s Day is the opportunity to celebrate how the role of women has changed throughout the years. There are many key women throughout history and, in particular nursing, who have inspired and changed the culture for women in general and for those women working in certain professions. 

What do you think is the biggest challenge for women today and what has been your biggest challenge?

Challenges for woman have changed over the years, and if the question was asked several years ago the answer would be very different. 

I think the biggest challenge for women has been to be respected and listened to for their knowledge and experience. I think things have moved on greatly and for women, especially within our profession, and I think respect and autonomy within our profession is very high.  

I don’t think that is the same in other professions, but within nursing and health care I think women are well respected and listened to.  Other professions could take the lead from this and ensure that women are listened to and respected for their knowledge and experience. 

Which woman has inspired you and why?

Betsi Cadwaladr would be one of the Welsh nurse leaders who has inspired me. 

She has an inspirational story as she met so many barriers to achieve her goal. She worked alongside Florence Nightingale, but she did not receive the recognition or reward for her work due to socioeconomic factors. Her determination and passion to improve hygiene levels and standards of care for soldiers in the Crimean war eventually got her the recognition she deserved.

This should inspire us all, as nurses, to strive at all costs to ensure our patients have the fundamental care and rights they deserve. 

Last updated Sunday 8 March 2020

First published on Sunday 8 March 2020