Katharine came to LSBU as a band six nurse working on a general pediatric ward. She wanted to develop her practice to the next level and become an Advanced Nurse Practitioner, a growing role thanks to the changing demands placed upon the health service.
“Although LSBU is not my nearest University, I was happy to travel to study there as it has an amazing reputation for nursing courses,” she explains. “I particularly wanted to take the Children’s Advanced Nurse Practitioner course they offered as the content is exactly what I required for my new role and it is run by respected lecturers who have a wide range of experience in pediatric nursing. This particular course is accredited to the RCN which was very important to me too.”
The Children’s Advanced Nurse Practitioner course can be demanding, as students have to balance work commitments with directed and individual study. Over three years Katharine developed her ability to apply knowledge and understanding of the field of professional practice to complex issues, and found she was supported in her learning by both her tutors and a like-minded peer group.
“The highlight of my course? – passing all my modules! The course is hard, but it’s attainable and very rewarding.”
Advanced Nurse Practitioner
Katharine is now working as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner, in a Children’s Assessment Unit. This role is allowing her a much greater degree of autonomy in working to assess, diagnose and treat children with minor illnesses and ailments. “I enjoy the interactions with the children and their families and although it is a huge responsibility working as an ANP I know I have the support from the doctors and my managers, and I am able to develop both personally and professionally. Every day’s a school day!”
The history taking and assessment skills Katharine developed while on her course are proving invaluable in her day-to-work: “I am able to make treatment plans. I can prescribe where necessary and I now liaise with inpatient areas and the multi-disciplinary teams where appropriate. The course programme, especially the assessment module prepares you very well for this role.” Katharine hopes that the course forms a strong foundation which can be used to develop her role still further. “I’d like to become increasingly autonomous and develop the service that we offer. I believe there continues to be career progression opportunities, including that of nurse consultant, within my current role.”