Helen Ballantyne

Sickle cell screening

Global health

A CPD article improved Helen Ballantyne’s knowledge of nursing issues in relation to globalisation and global health.

Implantable cardioverter defibrillators

Implantable cardioverter defibrillators

A CPD article improved Helen Ballantyne’s understanding of the effects of implantable cardioverter defibrillators on patients’ quality of life.


Undertaking effective handovers in the healthcare setting

Handovers are a crucial aspect of the patient’s healthcare pathway. Effective handovers promote patient safety and continuity of care and may contribute to increased job satisfaction for nurses. It is important that nurses can identify any potential barriers to effective handovers so that these can be addressed. An increasing emphasis on person-centred care in the NHS has resulted in changes in the way handovers are conducted, and there has been a shift away from nurse-to-nurse communication towards increased patient involvement. Evidence supports the use of a structured framework in handovers and the author advocates placing patients at the centre of their care by using bedside handovers. Nurses require training and support to enable them to deliver effective handovers that meet the requirements of their organisation, colleagues and patients.

Developing nursing care plans

This article aims to enhance nurses’ understanding of nursing care plans, reflecting on the past, present and future use of care planning. This involves consideration of the central theories of nursing and discussion of nursing models and the nursing process. An explanation is provided of how theories of nursing may be applied to care planning, in combination with clinical assessment tools, to ensure that care plans are context specific and patient centred.

Breaking bad news

Breaking bad news to patients and their families is a frequent occurrence in my role as a staff nurse working on a cardiothoracic intensive care unit. The CPD article provided strategies that I can apply immediately in my practice as well as outlining challenges and difficulties that I may encounter when communicating bad news to patients and their families.

Writing an article

Nursing is a career that I enjoy and am passionate about. Before qualifying as a nurse, I was a qualified veterinary nurse. Ideas and concepts from human medicine are often transferred to the veterinary profession. I have been able to share my experiences of both professions through lecturing and writing journal articles and reflective pieces for magazines.

Compassionate care

Before reading the CPD article, I would have found it difficult to define compassion. The concept is subjective and can mean different things to different people.