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Community Nursing is a highly demanding and complex sector due to an ageing population and the rising number of patients living within the community with long term conditions.
I undertook my first Community placement during the final year of my Nursing degree. I was extremely apprehensive going into this placement as Community Nursing was not an area that I thought that I would enjoy. However, the team that I joined to undertake my Community placement were undoubtedly the most welcoming and supporting team I could have wished for. I was given the opportunity to take my own caseload of patients. As a third-year student it was crucial that I showed enthusiasm, drive and motivation to promote health care within the Community sector. I achieved this through my Quality Improvement Practicum that I devised and implemented within my 10 weeks of being with the team.
Quality Improvement is a major aspect of Nursing. As healthcare professionals, it is vital that we always strive to deliver evidence based care to promote effective safe practice through education and further learning. My QI Practicum was to “Improve the daily completion of the Daily Pressure Ulcer Safety Cross”. This was done through continuous auditing and devising a new daily planner for the Nursing team to ensure that daily completion was being achieved, as failure to do so leads to discrepancies, and can have an everlasting impact on patient safety. I’m delighted to say that as a result of completing my QI project on the daily completion of the Safety Cross it went from 22% to 100% accuracy.
On completion of this placement I also left another form of documentation that I had devised: “Daily Pressure Ulcer Safety Cross – Nursing Intervention”. This new form of documentation allowed the team to obtain accurate evidence of the provisions of care that they were delivering to patients on their caseload with pressure area. I thoroughly enjoyed my Community Nursing placement, and on reflection, I was continually learning, and the opportunities within the sector to promote learning were always made available to healthcare professionals.
On receiving the news that I had won the QNIS Undergraduate Award for promoting excellence in Community Nursing, I felt extremely honoured and proud to receive such as prestigious award. I was overcome with emotion to be informed that my hard work within the Community sector had been recognised, which was something that I set out to achieve whilst undertaking my Quality Improvement project, which strived to promote excellence in care delivery within the Community sector. Winning this award has made me even more determined to continue my Community Nursing Career in the future.
At present, I have just started my first post in an Acute Admissions Unit working with first line assessment and dealing with acute deterioration and patient management. Looking to the future I would like to continue to work with Quality Improvement which requires commitment and drive to change aspects of care delivery that would continue to benefit patient outcomes. I would also like to move away from an acute setting in the future to develop my Nursing career within the Community Sector. I enjoy the thought of one day becoming a Tissue Viability Nurse Specialist or a Colorectal Nurse Specialist.
I feel that Community Nursing allows for continuity which is a huge part in bettering patient outcomes. I hope that throughout my Nursing career that I am able to satisfy patients’ needs, as this is very rewarding and fulfilling as a Nurse.
Jodie Kennedy, 2017 Graduate, University of Stirling
20 November 2017
Queens Nursing Institute Scotland – supporting community nurses through education and practice – Guest Blogger
When you see this blog, your first question might be “who is the QNIS, and why are they contributing to a blog on the Stirling University Health Sciences page?” You may even need to google us. Go ahead, I’ll wait. I’ll even help.
That is us, the Queen’s Nursing Institute Scotland. We’re a small community nursing charity, and we have been around since 1889. We are based in Edinburgh, but cover the length and breadth of Scotland.
That explains the who, but what about the why?
Our mantra is promoting excellence in community nursing across Scotland. This includes anything that helps get evidence into practice, and we do this by providing professional development opportunities, influencing key stakeholders, and providing funding for research, education and professional development.
What does this mean for you?
It means that we will be here to help and support you in a variety of different ways as you move through your community nursing career, sometimes, without you even knowing. And this is how we’ll do it.
Several of you may have attended our annual conference, held in March in Dunblane. Next year, our conference is going to be held in Edinburgh, at Surgeon’s Hall. We have already secured Jos de Blok as one of our speakers, and he will talk about the Buurtzorg model of care and realising a dream – the story of his entrepreneurial spirit, which built on the evidence to make high quality care a reality, which has revolutionised community health and social care provision in the Netherlands. Our conferences are a wonderful way to develop within your profession, and an opportunity to build and grow your networks. Further information on the conference will appear on our website later this year.
We encourage excellence by providing awards for the best undergraduate and post graduate community nursing student in each University across Scotland, ensuring that the very best are recognised and rewarded.
We also deliver funding for education and professional development by way of grants. We have already provided seven grants this year, and the next group of education grants are available until 28th September. For 2015 we have three funding streams: Individual Education Grants, to help nurses pursue their studies; Learning Visits, where we support a nurse to visit or shadow nurses across Scotland, the UK and Europe, and Team Headspace, protecting time for teams to identify ways to work more effectively together.
One of our core areas is funding research and development. Each year we establish what key issues need attention, and provide a funding stream for innovation. This year, our ‘Catalysts for Change’ programme looked at improving health inequalities, and six projects have been funded, covering everything from homeless transitional care to the health of those working in lap dancing clubs.
We are currently in the latter stages of developing a new set of voluntary standards for District Nursing Practice and Education. These standards will enhance, not replace, the current NMC standards, and will ensure that nurses undertaking the SPQ are equipped for contemporary and future practice.
We offer Long Service Awards to nurses who have worked in the community for over 21 years, ensuring that loyalty and commitment are suitably rewarded. This also ensures we are there at the beginning of your career, the middle, and at the end of it.
That should explain why we were asked to provide a blog, but if you need any further details, please visit our website. You’ve already googled it once!
Rob Mackie, Research, Policy and Communications Officer, QNIS
29 July 2015