On the

One trust’s affirmative approach includes staff as well as patients, says Ben Jones

move Neil Brimblecombe has taken up post as director of nursing at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust. Dr Brimblecombe joins the trust from South Staffordshire and Shropshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, where he was director of nursing and chief operating officer. Dr Brimblecombe began his career as a mental health and community nurse in London. National breast cancer support charity The Haven has appointed Helen Crilly as breast care nurse and programme manager at its Hereford headquarters. Having spent 20 years as a district nurse with a special interest in oncology and palliative care, Ms Crilly worked as a specialist nurse for palliative care at a hospice in Western Australia. Karen Strickland has been appointed associate head of the school of nursing and midwifery at Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University, joining from Edinburgh Napier University where she was a senior lecturer and senior teaching fellow. She began her career as a clinical nurse in Edinburgh, before becoming a research nurse and then lecturer in cancer and palliative care at Marie Curie Cancer Care.


Cathy Geddes is the newly appointed director of nursing at Mid Essex Hospital NHS Trust, leaving her post as interim chief executive at Whipps Cross University Hospital NHS Trust.

TOP MARKS FOR CARE EQUALITY For some years, employers who do excellent work in promoting equality for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people have been recognised by the Stonewall Workplace Equality Index. Last year, the gay rights organisation introduced the Healthcare Equality Index, recognising healthcare organisations that deliver best quality treatment for LGB patients, families and carers.

‘THE LGBT COMMUNITY KNOW THEY WILL BE TREATED IN WAYS THAT SUIT THEM’ The 32 organisations ranked by the index in 2013 were benchmarked across a series of categories that included staff training, data collection and workplace equality. At the top-ranking Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which serves 100,000 people on the south coast about

Seminar The Florence Nightingale Museum will hold an evening seminar on Passions Between Women in Victorian Britain on February 27. Senior archivist at the Wellcome Library Lesley Hall will explore the stories of women who loved and were loved by other women in this era, and whether they were doomed to be thwarted. Entry to the seminar costs £8 and includes a glass of wine and a tour of the museum in Lambeth Palace Road, London. Book with [email protected] or on 020 7620 0374. Duty of candour A conference called Raising Concerns and Developing Openness will be held on March 25 at London’s Hallam Conference Centre. The focus of the event will be on raising, escalating and managing concerns, developing

60 per cent of the 4,700-strong workforce are nurses. For the trust’s strategic director of social care and partnerships, Vincent Badu, coming first is recognition that the trust ‘has done a lot of work to create an affirmative culture for staff and patients’. ‘Working well with lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) patients and staff has positive outcomes for the whole workforce,’ says Mr Badu. For example, since 2008 there has been a 20 per cent reduction in the number of staff at the trust who are unwilling to disclose their sexual orientation. The affirmative culture also includes working in partnership with the trust’s LGBT staff network Time Out to gain a better understanding of the LGBT population’s needs. Understanding the sensibilities around LGBT communities is an important characteristic among the index’s high scoring organisations. Brighton and

openness and implementing the duty of candour. The conference will also include an extended legal update session on raising concerns, whistleblowing and the duty of candour. Nursing Standard readers can claim a 20 per cent discount on the conference fee by quoting HCUK20RCN when booking. tinyurl.com/HCCODoC. The conference can be followed on Twitter #raisingconcernsNHS Revalidation The Nursing and Midwifery Council continues to consult on its proposals for revalidation. Currently, nurses and midwives must confirm to the NMC every three years that they remain fit to practise. The NMC proposes that in future practitioners could be asked to reflect on patient feedback and asks how this feedback could be incorporated into the revalidation process. The consultation also asks

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I AM PROUD OF THE TRUST’S DIRECTION Paediatric nurse Janet Lee works at Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. ‘I have worked for the trust for 32 years and have seen a lot of changes in attitudes and training. I am really proud of the direction the trust has taken and that they are placed in the index. ‘When I first started, I felt that I was accepted because I was very good at my job – almost a case of: “Yes, she’s a lesbian, but she is also a good nurse.”

‘The trust had no guidelines, no support and no expectations of how staff should treat each other or their patients. ‘Now, equality questions are mandatory at recruitment, all new staff have an induction session about managing LGBT issues and the trust asks our LGBT forum to contribute to all new policies and guidelines. ‘Discrimination has diminished. Occasionally, someone new gets it wrong, but colleagues will reliably say: “Hang on, that’s not how we work here.”’

Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust serves an area with a traditionally large LGBT community and training has been vital in helping nurses understand how to deal with people sensitively (see case study). ‘It is important that the LGBT community know they are going to be treated in a way that suits them,’ says the trust’s head of equality, diversity and human rights Barbara Harris. As part of their four-day induction, newly employed nurses are told what the trust expects of its staff when treating those from the LGBT community with dignity and respect. This could be something as simple as appreciating that a female patient will not necessarily have a male partner, or understanding that LGBT patients may not wish to discuss sexually transmitted diseases NS Ben Jones is a freelance journalist RESOURCES  Stonewall Healthcare Equality Index tinyurl.com/S-wallHEI  RCN Proud campaign tinyurl.com/RCNProud  RCN guidance on next of kin tinyurl.com/RCN guidanceLGBT

how practice-related feedback could be used to improve care, how nurses and midwives can confirm their fitness to practise via a third party, and how revalidation can meet the needs of the practitioner’s scope of practice. The consultation includes questions about revisions to the code. Responses should be received by March 31. tinyurl.com/NMCReval

projects. Applications will be accepted from all professional and patient groups in gastrointestinal care and must be consultant led. Collaborative projects are also welcomed. The closing date for initial registration of interest is February 14. Entry packs and details are available from [email protected]

Scholarship The Shire Awards for Gastrointestinal Excellence, a national awards programme to recognise excellence in gastroenterology, is accepting entries for 2014. The awards recognise healthcare professionals, units and networks in gastrointestinal care for innovative work, best practice and high standards of patient care. Three awards of £10,000, £5,000 and £3,000 can be used to develop the winning

Clare’s Law Legislation that will enable people to check the police record of a new partner is to be expanded to cover all of England and Wales. The policy is named after Clare Wood, who was murdered by her ex-boyfriend George Appleton at her Salford home in 2009. Clare had been unaware of his history of violence against women. The law is expected to come into effect in England and Wales during March 2014. tinyurl.com/Clares-law

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Top marks for care equality.

For some years, employers who do excellent work in promoting equality for lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people have been recognised by the Stonewall...
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