• About Us


The Neonatal Nurses Association was established over 35 years ago in 1977 by Beryl Chadney, a senior nurse at the Department of Health. She selected a small group of neonatal nurses from across the country, to address the inadequacies within neonatal nursing, perceived to be a contributor to a higher than average perinatal mortality rate in the UK, in comparison to other European countries.

One factor identified as a probable cause was the poor communication between specialised units to promote and share emerging developments in a speciality industry that was very much in its infancy. A national conference organised for the following year was overwhelmingly subscribed and neonatal nurses demanded more interaction amongst themselves and specialist education.

The purpose of the Neonatal Nurses Association has remained unchanged since then; a national organisation representing neonatal nurses, steered by neonatal nurses to promote neonatal nursing for the benefit of sick newborns and their families throughout the country.


- Neonatal Nursing Journal

- Yearly achievement awards

- Special interest groups

- Affiliation with COINN

(Council of International Neonatal Nurses)

- Annual or quarterly subscription

(Concessions for students/retirees/allied professionals/nursery nurses/HCA/SW)

- Reduced cost for members to the Annual Conference


Within 5 years of the Neonatal Nurses Associations beginnnings, there were council members representing different areas of the country, correlating local activities and feeding into the national Association, whilst Beryl Chadney was appointed the first president. Soon a small membership fee was introduced and the Association became a registered charity with a formal constitution and working arrangements.

  • Denise Evans

    Denise EvansNNA Chairman

    My belief is that to facilitate high quality care and excellent practice is not just about introducing new knowledge or practice. It's about sharing knowledge within Networks, imparting this knowledge and experience and then still meeting the local needs.

  • Róisín McKeon-Carter

    Róisín McKeon-CarterNNA Executive

    In my neonatal nursing career, I have undertaken every role including staff nurse, sister, ward manager and I became an ANNP in 2002. I am keen to raise the profile of ANNPs as whatever their role, if we deliver exceptional care, our neonatal population will grow to be healthy adults. #ProudNeonatalNurse

  • Patrick Turton

    Patrick TurtonNNA Executive

    I started working in Bristol on a general Paediatric ward moving to Paediatric intensive care. Following a charge nurse role with the Neonatal Intensive care Team at St Michaels, I started a role as Lead Nurse for the Neonatal Emergency Stabilisation and Transport Team. I’ve enjoyed working within such a highly experienced and motivated team and developing /improving the service we provide to the region’s neonatal units.

    • Cath Holder

      Cath HolderNNA Treasurer

      I developed a passion for Neonates during my 3 week student placement in 1971 (part of my 12 weeks Obstetrics training). It wasn't untill 1986 that I was able to fulfill my dream of Neonatal Nursing. In Leeds in 1992 I became a member of the NNA. I have seen many changes during my career and within the NNA but we strive towards the positive remembering that ‘THE GREATER THE NUMBER THE LOUDER THE VOICE’

    • Sharon Nurse

      Sharon NurseNNA Executive | Ireland Representative

      My clinical and academic work in Midwifery and Neonatology is best seen in my publications and presentations. Although much of my work is centred on teaching, I am passionate about projects like pain relief for babies in the NNU, developmental care, breast feeding and neonatal palliative care. I am determined to have the voices of neonatal nurses heard and to highlight their work and achievements.

    • Liz Crathern

      Liz CrathernNNA Executive

      It has been a natural progression from being a Neonatal nurse to becoming part of the NNA and support it’s work for neonates and their families. Being a neonatal nurse since May 1980, I’ve worked for 8 of these with Nyakabale Hospital and Karoli Lwanga School of Nursing in Uganda for and recently had the opportunity to teach neonatal nursing in DaNang Vietnam.

      • Julia Petty

        Julia PettyEducation SIG

        I am the current joint chair of a Special Interest group for Education and Research called LEARN (Linking Education and Research in Neonatal Care). I have an interest in the development of teaching resources and I’m working towards a Doctorate in Education focusing on the use of narrative analysis and storytelling to teach nursing students about person-centred, empathic neonatal care.

      • Sara Harris

        Sara HarrisCommunity SIG

        I trained as a general nurse in the late 1970’s in North London and initially specialised in cardio-thoracic. I gained a wealth of extensive experience in the community practice, communication and partnership, and working with numerous external agencies to apply those things she has learned into hospital settings to enhance the service and family experience.

      • Claire O'Mara

        Claire O'MaraNNA Executive

        My belief is that to facilitate high quality care and excellent practice is not just about introducing new knowledge or practice. It's about sharing knowledge within Networks, imparting this knowledge and experience and then still meeting the local needs.