What is your current role?
I work as the practice development nurse for the operating theatres and recovery room at Evelina London. This means that on top of my clinical work, I am responsible for training, developing and recruiting nurses to make sure we have a diverse and well-skilled team working together to provide the best care for our children and young people.
I deliver training programmes for student nurses and those looking to progress their careers in the area of theatres and scrub nursing, and I’m responsible for co-ordinating student placements as well as courses for our staff to go on.
Nursing in theatres, or scrub nursing, is very different to typical nursing and isn’t really taught as part of your degree. We assist with operations by preparing equipment and liaising with other teams in the hospital to ensure a smooth transition to and from theatre.
What’s it like to work at Evelina London?
Our Trust is internationally renowned as a centre of excellence, so it’s great to be a part of upholding that reputation by developing the theatres nursing team.
There is definitely a sense of making sure children are at the heart of everything - you can even see it in the design of the hospital.
Specifically in theatres, it’s great to work alongside anaesthetists, surgeons and other practitioners to deliver amazing care. I love the sense of teamwork.
What is your passion?
Helping people to understand how great scrub nursing is! I’ve worked in this area for most of my career and find the pace and variety fascinating.
I want to help more student nurses consider it as a career and have the chance to practise skills on the job. Whilst developing a curriculum for scrub nurses, I am also studying for a post-graduate diploma in Leading Practice Education at the University of Brighton, which was funded by a scholarship I was awarded by Evelina London!
I am also passionate about providing excellent patient care - that’s ultimately why we are training and developing our nurses. There is always something new we can learn, whether that’s in a formal learning environment, from our patients, or from other situations.
What exciting things are you working on?
We are currently planning the staff for our new, Children’s Day Treatment Centre.
There will be many additional roles available as we will have two new operating theatres specifically for day surgery patients. We have a vision that everyone in the unit works as a team and is skilled in several areas to give flexibility - so this will be designed differently to a usual day surgery unit, and these won’t be nursing roles as we know them.
We are also investing in nursing support roles for people wanting a taster of clinical care to help with their career considerations. These roles will be central to the flow of the unit and involve escorting patients, stock replenishing and engagement with patients and families. We’ll specifically be looking to employ people in our local communities for these roles.
We’re looking at how we encourage young people considering careers in healthcare, and are offering 14-19 year olds the chance to explore various areas of nursing practice with an online course, as well as work experience within the nursing environment of their choice.
As well as supporting local people to work with us, we’ve started recruiting internationally and have already confirmed positions for nurses from India, Philippines, the Middle East, South Africa and Kenya. These nurses bring a wealth of experience in different specialist areas which will add to the world-class delivery of patient care.
Thank you to the children and young people who have so brilliantly illustrated our blog pages.