'Golden' nurse honoured with prestigious award

Director of nursing Paul Morris with deputy Jacky Copping, who was awarded the Chief Nursing Officer Gold Award.

Director of nursing Paul Morris with deputy Jacky Copping, who was awarded the Chief Nursing Officer Gold Award. - Credit: JPUH NHS Foundation Trust

A senior nurse at a Norfolk hospital has been honoured with a prestigious award, just months after being made an MBE.

Jacky Copping, deputy director of nursing at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston, has been awarded the Chief Nursing Officer Gold Award, one of just a handful given out nationwide.

Recognising outstanding achievements in nursing, the award was presented virtually by Ruth May, chief nursing officer for England.

Jacky Copping MBE, deputy director of nursing at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston. 

Jacky Copping MBE, deputy director of nursing at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston. - Credit: JPUH NHS Foundation Trust

Miss Copping, who began her career as an enrolled nurse at the JPUH more than 34 years ago as an 18-year-old, said: "I feel extremely proud to have received such a prestigious award from the leader of the nursing profession.

"We are very much a team here at the James Paget, and I would not have been awarded this special gold award without the support of my amazing nursing colleagues, who are so dedicated to providing safe, compassionate, patient-centred care."


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Miss Copping, from Beccles, became a registered nurse in 1987 before specialising in orthopaedic nursing.

In 1998, she was promoted to senior sister, overseeing the newly-opened orthopaedic rehabilitation ward at Lowestoft Hospital, before being promoted again four years later when she returned to the JPUH as a ward-based matron.

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A number of senior roles followed, including two years as a project director for patient safety and divisional lead nurse, before promotion to her current role in 2017.

Following her tireless efforts during the coronavirus pandemic, Miss Copping was made an MBE in the New Year's Honours list.

As well as initiating the Face Fit testing regime to ensure staff are as safe as possible during the pandemic, Miss Copping and the JPUH team have worked at a national level to help influence UK design and manufacture of developing masks with other acute trusts and NHS national procurement teams.

Paul Morris, JPUH director of nursing, said: "Jacky is a highly respected nursing leader here at the James Paget, and all her colleagues were absolutely delighted she has received this prestigious award, which is thoroughly deserved."

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