My job

60 seconds with uro-oncology clinical nurse specialist Amanda Baxter 

To truly listen is to use all of your senses, and this is a fundamental part of nursing, says the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust's longest-serving clinical nurse specialist Amanda Baxter

To truly listen is to use all of your senses, and this is a fundamental part of nursing, says the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust's longest-serving clinical nurse specialist Amanda Baxter

Amanda_Baxter©NC
Amanda Baxter. Picture: Nathan Clarke

Amanda Baxter was the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust’s first clinical nurse specialist (CNS). After qualifying as a registered general nurse and registered mental health nurse in 1984, she joined the London trust’s uro-oncology unit in 1987 as a staff nurse, rising to senior sister. The CNS role that had been created in the 1970s spanned both managerial duties and clinical practice, but after recognising the need for a CNS that was entirely clinically focused, she worked with the trust to develop the role, becoming the Royal Marsden’s first fully clinical CNS in uro-oncology in 1994.

What are your main work responsibilities?

To be a clinical expert, an educator and an advocate, providing patient care and acting as a resource for all members of the clinical team.

How did you get your job?

By gaining experience and knowledge of caring for patients with urological cancers, and having a passion for this field of nursing.

Who are your clients/patients?

Patients with all forms of urological cancers with all stages of the disease, and their families.

What do you love about your job?

Enabling patients to live with and beyond their cancer diagnosis, and working with supportive colleagues who have stretched my skills, abilities and practices.

What do you find most difficult?

Balancing the demands of the role, and ensuring all patients receive equity of care.

What is your top priority at work?

Building genuine relationships with patients by being honest with them about their diagnosis, prognosis and expectations.

How have you developed your skills in this role?

By keeping an open mind and grasping all opportunities to learn and develop.

What has been your most formative career experience?

My training, which taught me to ask questions and view things from other people’s perspectives.

What will be your next career move?

Retirement, which will be an opportunity to give free rein to my creative side.

What is the best lesson nursing has taught you?

That to truly listen is to use all of your senses. This is a fundamental part of nursing.

What career advice would you give your younger self?

Pace yourself, get a better balance in all aspects of the role, and give yourself time to write up and share projects.

 

This article is for subscribers only

Jobs