The Nursing Leadership Group is the recognised voice of aged residential care nursing. We have a collective, consistent and strong voice.

Providing nursing leadership – and ensuring that Registered Nurses in aged care are supported to work to their full potential – is one of the most important things we can do to improve health and wellbeing of older New Zealanders.

  • Registered nurses in aged residential care work in partnership as an essential part of the health system to deliver better health outcomes for New Zealanders.
  • Registered nurses in aged residential care provide a full spectrum of complex clinical assessment and care, including hospital-level care, dementia care and palliative care
  • A highly functioning aged residential care sector reduces the pressure on the public health system and prevents admissions to public hospitals.

Registered nurses in aged residential care improve the quality of life and clinical care for older New Zealanders.

  • Registered nurses lead multi-disciplinary clinical health teams that provide care to the highest standard for New Zealand’s older and more vulnerable population and support services teams in aged care.
  • Specialised aged care nursing offers a career development pathway. Our nurses need equal access to professional development and training, equal pay and equal conditions.
  • New Zealand needs to attract more specialist nurses into aged residential care now and in the future to meet the complex needs and increasing demand of an ageing population.

Older New Zealanders have a right to specialised clinical care by Registered Nurses.


The Nursing Leadership Group consists of seven experienced registered nurses. They are:

 Frances Hughes Dr Frances Hughes CNZM. Frances is the General Manager Nursing and Clinical Strategy, Oceania Healthcare. Frances previously held the positions of CEO of the International Council of Nursing in Geneva, Chief Nursing and Midwifery officer for Queensland, Professor of Nursing at University of Auckland and the Chief Nurse for New Zealand.
 Rhonda Sheriff Rhonda Sherriff is co-owner and operator of Chatswood Rest Home and Retirement Village in Canterbury. Rhonda is the Clinical Adviser to the NZACA.
 Cheyne Chalmers Cheyne Chalmers is Chief Operating Officer of Ryman Healthcare.  Cheyne was Chief Nursing and Midwifery Officer at Monash Health and Director of Nursing at Capital & Coast DHB
 Tanya Bish 1 Tanya Bish is Clinical Director of Metlifecare. She has extensive leadership experience in the aged care sector including working as a Gerontology Nurse Specialist and contributing to aged care research.
 Anna Blackwell Anna Blackwell is the co-owner and manager of Cook Street Nursing Care Centre. Anna has held many varied clinical leadership positions, has been an expert advisor to the Health and Disability Commission and also provides nursing leadership and coaching.
 Virginia Sisson Virginia Sisson is Operations Manager at The Selwyn Foundation. Virginia has held many varied clinical and operational nursing leadership roles.
 Gillian Robinson 2 Gillian Robinson is Director of Healthcare Compliance Solutions Ltd and author of the book 'Excellence in residential care: a guide for managers and nurses.' Gillian has worked in residential care as a nurse, manager and lead auditor.