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Children’s nursing revolutionary receives honorary award

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Marcelle de Sousa, who revolutionised healthcare for children and young people in the UK, has been honoured for her achievements by London South Bank University.

Former children’s nurse Marcelle de Sousa campaigned throughout her career to raise awareness of young people’s health needs and the role of nurses in helping to meet them.

Her pioneering work included setting up the first renal unit specifically for children, at Guys Hospital, and the first multi-disciplinary unit for young people, at University College Hospital London.

She was awarded an “honorary fellowship” during the university’s Health and Social Care Faculty graduation ceremony on 8 May.

Ms de Sousa said: “I am delighted to receive an honorary fellowship – it’s an honour I wish to share with the children’s nurses who I have worked with.

“Our patients depend on us having the right knowledge and skills to care for them and I believe that nurses graduating today have so much to look forward to.”

Martin Earwicker, vice-chancellor at the university, said Ms de Sousa’s “outstanding achievements act as a model of inspiration for our students and staff”.

The ceremony at the Royal Festival Hall also saw newly qualified nurses, midwives, health visitors, community practitioners and public health specialists receive their degrees from the university.

Judith Ellis, executive dean of the faculty and interim chair of the Nursing and Midwifery Council, said: “The students should all be proud of what they have achieved and we wish them all the best for the future. “

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