The regional primary care nursing team ensures that primary care nursing requirements and developments are integrated into PHA nursing priorities and it also contributes to corporate nursing and midwifery objectives. The primary care nursing team focuses on:
- improving health and wellbeing;
- reducing inequalities;
- preventing disease;
- promoting and achieving healthy lifestyles.
We work with a diverse range of primary care service providers, the HSCB Integrated Care Directorate and Health and Social Care Trusts (HSCTs) to:
- maintain and further develop innovation and change in the quality and safety of services to patients and communities;
- lead in the development of practice nursing.
The new regional primary care nursing team is located in County Hall, Ballymena:
Rose McHugh: Lead Primary Care Nurse.
Kathy Nicholl: Primary Care Nurse Advisers, eastern and southern locality.
Michelle Hutchinson: Primary Care Nurse Advisers, eastern and southern locality.
Marie Carey: Primary Care Nurse Advisers, northern and western locality.
- Provide strategic direction in relation to practice-employed nurses, considering the impact of proposed developments and in response to identified needs and challenges;
- Provide support, advice and guidance to practice-employed nurses, their employers and other statutory organisations on all aspects of practice nursing;
- Facilitate learning and development opportunities for all practice-employed nurses to enable sharing of best practice.
- Develop robust regional communication networks with primary care colleagues, eg website, face to face practice visits, PN forums, telephone contacts, email networks;
- Facilitate re-design of nurses’ roles to meet changes in service requirements, eg in response to Primary Care Partnership proposals; Quality and Outcomes Framework; enhanced services;
- Support learning and development and facilitate appropriate training opportunities;
- Develop clinical and professional standards and guidelines for practice nurses;
- Develop systems and processes to help practice nurses effectively discharge professional and regulatory responsibilities, eg appraisal and supervision systems;
- Review skill mix and support the safe development of the healthcare assistant (HCA) role and function;
- Ensure health and social wellbeing, health improvement and health protection remain key priorities.
- This year, we held a facilitated workshop to agree the annual work plan for the primary care nursing team;
- We completed a training needs analysis of GP employed nurses in the western area, and have since developed a regional workforce questionnaire, which will be used to survey all GP employed nursing staff. This will help inform service planning;
- We have facilitated training in response to identified learning and development needs;
- We are currently developing standardised clinical and operational protocols and procedures to support practice nursing;
- We carried out a review of the experiences of GP practices and practice nurses in the management of the H1N1 flu vaccination campaign;
- We have carried out extensive regional engagement and consultation with practice nurse groups/forums and individuals on proposed initiatives and priority areas.