The critical role played by NHS workers has been thrown into the spotlight during the pandemic, and Coventry University has now honoured four local health leaders.
Fiona Burton, Andy Hardy, Sharon Binyon, and Glen Burley have all been awarded honorary doctorates in recognition of their commitment.
Sharon Binyon is the medical director of the Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust with considerable expertise in adult mental health.
She is an advisor to the Trust Board and a passionate advocate of using innovation to transform clinical services to meet current NHS challenges. Sharon has been made an Honorary Doctor of Science.
She said: ‘The last two years have been challenging for the NHS and its mental health services. We see an increase in need of our population for support. The work that my colleagues and I undertake both within CWPT and its partner agencies in developing the services will give us a strong basis from which to help our collective recovery.’
Fiona Burton, who has been awarded the same honour, has served as director of nursing at the South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust (SWFT) since 2017, having previously worked as deputy director of nursing and head of acute nursing.
She sits on the board of the SWFT Charity, which strives to enhance patient care and treatment, and she has developed best practice literature for the treatment of surgical and trauma wounds. Her nursing staff leadership has been recognised in the Care Quality Commission’s most recent report on the Trust, which is rated as outstanding.
Glen Burley, Chief Executive of SWFT, the George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust and the Wye Valley NHS Trust, has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration. He regularly appears on the annual top 50 NHS Chief Executives list, and under his leadership, SWFT has been rated as ‘outstanding’ by the Care Quality Commission.
Glen said: ‘I am honoured to receive this recognition from Coventry University. Working in the NHS has been extremely rewarding, and I have the privilege of working with and learning from so many amazing colleagues and partners. I am very passionate about improving healthcare and enhancing NHS provision, so receiving this Doctor of Business Administration degree is extremely humbling.’
Also, on the business front, Professor Andy Hardy, chief executive officer of University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust, has been presented with an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration.
In the six years before being appointed to the role in 2010, he was the Trust’s chief finance officer and its deputy chief executive officer from 2008–2010.
His leadership has proved important in helping to progress several large projects with UHCW, including launching the Centre for Care Excellence in collaboration with Coventry University further to enhance patient care and academic excellence through research, practise development, education and innovation.
Andy said: ‘It is a great honour to receive this Honorary Doctorate from Coventry University. Our relationship grew stronger throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, with their unwavering support for the Trust at its time of most need. Our collaboration continuously develops and grows as we look to research to continuously improve our services and how we strive to deliver the best teaching and training for future healthcare professionals.’
Rugby’s first Pakistani Mayor, Dr James Shera, presented with an MBE in 2007 for services to the NHS and communities in the Midlands, also received an Honorary Doctorate of Education. He has held several non-executive directorships at NHS Trusts in the West Midlands and played a key role in developing the Myton Hospice facility at St Cross Hospital and the new Warwickshire College building.
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