In January 2012, Viv was appointed as the Department of Health's Director of Nursing and the government's Principal Adviser on Public Health Nursing, providing high-quality and independent nursing advice to ministers and officials on policy issues and public health nursing. Viv leads the national Health Visiting Programme and School Nurse Development Programme. In September 2012, Viv was also appointed the Director of Nursing at Public Health England.
Viv trained as a nurse in Oxford in 1976 and worked in children's nursing before training as a health visitor in Oxford in the early 1980s. She worked as a health visitor and research health visitor in Oxford while studying for a BA and then Masters degree in health and social policy.
Viv has worked in a number of NHS operational management and commissioning roles and undertaken nurse executive roles in both provider and commissioning organisations. She has also worked for strategic health authorities and local government on projects relating to nursing strategy and services for children and families.
Viv joined the Department of Health as Deputy Chief Nursing Officer in November 2007. She is a Fellow of the Queen’s Nursing Institute and Visiting Professor at King's College London.
Viv is a guest blogger for The King's Fund's Time to Think Differently programme.