Nurse Awards

Supporting district nurses to become champions of compassionate care

Winner: A project helping district nurses to develop their leadership skills and champion high quality, compassionate care is shortlisted in the Leadership category of the RCNi Nurse Awards 2016.

Tracy Harman.  Picture credit: Nathan ClarkeTracy Harman. Picture credit: Nathan Clarke

Tracy Harman and her team at Virgin Care are finalists in the leadership category of the RCNi Nurse Awards 2016. The award, sponsored by NHS England, recognises clinical leaders who have developed initiatives to ensure their nursing ward or unit offers the highest quality and safest care possible.

The in-house development programme addressed the considerable challenges facing the district nursing service – from internal changes such as use of new technology to external pressures of constantly evolving district nurse roles.

Leadership training was seen as especially important for district nurses because their isolation and heavy workload mean there is less opportunity for reflection and peer support.

All practice teachers, district nurses and senior community nurses at Band 6 or 7 took part in the programme. It was devised by Tracey, a district nurse and practice teacher herself. Ruth McCarthy and Kim Geraghty supported its delivery across Surrey.

Tracy Harman.  Picture credit: Nathan ClarkeTracy Harman. Picture credit: Nathan Clarke

The two-and-a-half day programme consists of four modules including leadership behaviours, managing people and driving improvement, HR policy, root cause analysis for when things go wrong and how to manage difficult conversations.

Tracy says: ‘The feedback on the sessions told us not just how enjoyable the district nurses found the sessions but also how their learning has contributed to delivering a high quality, responsive district nursing service across Surrey.’

The editor of specialist journal Nursing Management, Sophie Blakemore, is on the shortlisting panel. She says: ‘The RCNi Nurse Awards 2016 are a wonderful way to recognise those who innovate in their practice to make a tangible difference to patient care.

‘The standard of entries received for the leadership award was exceptionally high; the finalists show how senior nurses and midwives are leading and developing their staff to improve morale, performance and care.’

About the sponsor

NHS England

NHS EnglandNHS England’s mission is to ensure health and high quality care for all, now and future generations. NHS England creates the culture and conditions for health and care services and staff to deliver the highest standard of care and ensure that valuable public resources are used effectively to get the best outcomes for individuals, communities and society for now and for future generations.