Cumbria Crack

Cumbrian health economy gains additional expertise

UCLan sees first cohort graduate from UK first-of-its-kind course
New MSc Hospitalist Medicine graduate Joyce Thompson with Professor Gershan Davis.

Additional expertise will be added to the North Cumbrian health economy after the first cohort of students graduated from a UK first-of-its-kind University course.

The three graduates from the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) two-year MSc Hospitalist Medicine course donned their cap and gown last week to graduate at the Institution’s Preston Campus.

The qualification, which was run in partnership with North Cumbria Integrated Care (NCIC) NHS Foundation Trust, saw the qualified nurses combine full-time work in busy hospital wards with rigorous academic study.

One of the new graduates is mature student Joyce Thompson, who works at West Cumberland Hospital. She said: “The hospitalist medicine course has allowed me to expand my medical knowledge and develop procedural skills. This was by being taught first principles of medical training by experienced GPs, consultants and Professor Davis. This has enabled me to become a senior advanced clinical practitioner with a greater understanding of clinical presentations, diagnosis, treatment plans and outcomes.”

The new graduates, who attended UCLan’s Westlakes Campus one day a week and undertook additional study at home, will now become senior advanced clinical practitioners at West Cumberland Hospital. They will join the middle grade (senior decision maker) composite rota, alongside conventionally trained medical registrars, to provide night ward cover.

The programme has followed the Royal College of Physicians curriculum and it was designed to equip clinical professionals from a non-medical background with the competencies to work at ‘registrar’ level in acute medicine.

The course was led by Gershan Davis, Professor of Cardiology at UCLan and NCIC.

He said: “I’m very proud of the first three MSc Hospitalist Medicine graduates. They have worked extremely hard and, not only are they rightly celebrating their academic success, but the Trust is celebrating too because patients will reap the benefits too. We have upskilled people with additional clinical knowledge and skills and those talents are only going to add to the health environment in Cumbria.

“This course was the first-of-its-kind in the UK and it is a fantastic example of how the collaboration between NCIC and UCLan is helping to lead the way in innovative practice by looking at new models of health care delivery to maintain the health and well-being of our population.”

Alison Budd, Director of Nursing for North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Trust said: “The Trust is very proud of these three members staff who have been working hard to care for our patients while studying to progress their career. Partnership working between the Trust and the University is key to enabling our current staff to expand their skills as well as encouraging more students to choose a nursing career in Cumbria.”

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