Clinical editor Eileen Shepherd brings to Nursing Times her extensive experience of being a nurse in the NHS in a variety of specialties and roles.
Eileen trained at Charing Cross Hospital in London, completing a four-year diploma in nursing. She worked as a staff nurse in cardiothoracic nursing and was rapidly promoted to ward sister in general surgery. Since then she has worked in a variety of senior clinical roles and has also worked as a bank and agency nurse during her career.
Using her nursing and clinical experience, Eileen was invited to work as a consultant on two major national projects with the Audit Commission, one on nursing itself, the other on the care of the older person.
Eileen has worked as a freelance writer and editor for 20 years, using her invaluable nursing knowledge to communicate with a specialist audience.
She joined the Nursing Times team in 2003 as supplements editor and is now clinical editor, responsible for planning and commissioning the clinical content. As well as using her own knowledge and experience, she works closely with a team of clinical advisers and with professional organisations to ensure that the clinical content is what nurses need, topical and up-to-date.
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'Incontinence can profoundly hit confidence'Subscription
We all have a perception of the person with incontinence: the new mother with stress incontinence; the middle-aged man recovering from a prostatectomy; or the older person with dementia. But do we ever think of young people?
'Specialist nurses need to prove their worth'Subscription
Specialist nurses have a pivotal role to play in patient care, yet as members of multi-professional teams, it can be difficult to demonstrate their unique contribution.
'Weight loss in cancer patients causes distress'Subscription
Weight loss is often associated with treatment and viewed as an inevitable consequence of the disease or its treatment.
As far back as 2009 a Nursing Times survey revealed gaps in continence care training and education. At that time more than one-third of over 1,000 respondents said they had not received any education about caring for incontinent patients in their nurse training, and 53% had had no training after registration.
Can you accept a free pen?Subscription
Have you recently been on an education trip or attended a lunch time session that was sponsored by a commercial company? Did you declare it to your organisation?
A few weeks ago I was talking to a ward sister about some amazing work she had done to reduce incidence of hospital-acquired pressure ulcers on her ward.
The government has not included feedback evidence from patients and families as part of performance appraisal in its response to the recommendations made by Robert Francis QC’s public inquiry into Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust.
Trusts need to make it clear to patient who is looking after them by using clear name badges, job titles and uniforms, according to the government.
There will be no mandatory obligation for ward nurse managers have supervisory status, according to the government response to the Francis Report published today.
‘Why is bowel care given such a low priority?’Subscription
Reading the Francis report I was struck by the number of references to poor bowel and bladder care. Yet continence care has always been an essential part of nurses’ work.
In the summer of 2015 the Daily Telegraph drew attention to unhealthy relationships between some health professionals and the pharmaceutical industry. It described lavish trips organised by drug manufacturers to promote their products and ultimately influence purchasing and prescribing practice.
I recently read the novel Even the Dogs, which is a fascinating insight into the lives of homeless and vulnerable people. The author Jon McGregor describes the stark realities of living on the edge of society, but what is most striking are his references to the importance of touch. He writes about how infrequently positive touch occurs in his characters’ lives, and describes one experience of a consultation with a nurse:
In his book Do No Harm retired neurosurgeon Henry Marsh described the irritation of taking time away from his work to sit though mandatory training.
I wonder if anyone was surprised by the recent news that a group of GP practices have been placed into special measures.
A few weeks ago I went to see Still Alice and cried. Despite close contact with people with dementia it was a shock to see a middle-aged woman with the condition, her rapid decline and the impact her illness had on those around her. As a woman in my fifties I was also frightened by what the future might hold.
I don’t watch Top Gear, and perhaps my dented and increasingly rusty Ford KA explains why. But I am interested in the Jeremy Clarkson affair because until now he has been one of the “untouchables”.
The revelations of the Francis Inquiry into care at Mid Staffordshire hospital two years ago made shocking reading. How could something like this happen in our NHS?
The rhetoric of providing health care in the community, away from hospital, has been with us for years but the recent media coverage of problems in EDs illustrates how little progress has been made in shifting care from hospitals to primary care services.
When I was a student nurse we were taught that gloves created a barrier between the nurse and patient. So for much of my early nursing career I thought nothing of changing soiled beds, emptying commodes and gathering up sputum pots with bare hands. Although I also remember being obsessed with washing my hands at every available opportunity.
I was struck last night by a tweet which quoted a CEO of an NHS Trust saying “I’m running the biggest nursing home in Europe. We haven’t done any elective work in years”.