A nurse at Kettering General Hospital has been appointed to a new specialised role, aimed at improving patient care and providing training to other medical staff.
Helen Fawdon has been appointed as the hospital’s first nurse consultant after working as the Trust’s advanced clinical practitioner lead in urgent care for four years.
The new role will see her working in Accident & Emergency and the Trust’s ambulatory care unit, looking after a wide variety of patients.
Nurse consultants are experienced nurses who spend a minimum of 50 per cent of their time working directly with patients.
In addition, they are responsible for being involved in research and contributing to the education, training and development of other nurses.
Helen, from Barton Seagrave, who has worked at KGH since 1981, said: “This is a first for Kettering General Hospital. We have never had a nurse consultant here before.
“Nurse consultants have been around for a number of years in the NHS and are helping nurses to achieve a very high level of clinical expertise.
“I am working along the senior emergency doctors and leading the advanced clinical practitioner and emergency nurse practitioner teams.
“We are working in A&E and in our ambulatory care unit, which cares for patients who require treatment and assessment but not an overnight stay in hospital.
“I am very excited to be pioneering this role which I think is a very important one.”
The day-to-day work that Helen will do will involves seeing and assessing patients in A&E and ambulatory care, prescribing medication, ordering investigations, referring patients on to other departments and discharging patients; very much like a junior doctor.
She will also work with her advanced nurse practitioner teams to further develop their skills and experience.
Director of nursing and quality, Leanne Hackshall, said: “Nurse consultants, while emulating some aspects of medical practice, play a unique and valuable role in nursing education, research and leadership that has a positive input on patient experience and outcome.
“Helen’s role as nurse consultant may be the first, but with the benefits already being realised, it will not be the only one in the future.”
Helen started work as a nurse consultant in March. She is leading a team of 15 advanced clinical practitioners and seven emergency nurse practitioners.