New super-nurses to help cut A&E waiting times at QMC
FIVE new nurses have been taken on to help staff the A&E department at the Queen's Medical Centre – and they say a challenge lies ahead.
The boost in staffing comes after the hospital missed its target for patient waiting times in A&E in 2011-12.
The Government target is for 95 per cent of patients to be seen within four hours, and the Nottingham University Hospitals Trust, which runs the QMC and City Hospital, set its own target of 98 per cent.
In figures reported by the Post last year, the trust missed both its own, and the Government target.
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The figures showed only 93.9 per cent of patients being seen within that period.
But yesterday Minister for Health Anna Soubry welcomed five new nurses to the QMC's A&E department and congratulated them on their appointments.
The new nurses, called advanced nurse practitioners (ANPd), who have all graduated from the University of Nottingham with a masters degree in Advanced Clinical Practice, know there is a challenge ahead.
Amber Bristow, 36, of Beeston, will fully qualify in November, but is already working at the hospital while training, is one of the five new staff members.
She said: "It is a very difficult role, but it is also very exciting. I like the fact that I can combine my senior nursing training with the new medical knowledge I've acquired.
"We now have the skills to really make a difference to the A&E department."
As an ANP, Amber will assess patients as they arrive to determine diagnosis and initial treatment, prescribe medication, request X-rays, blood tests and specialist scans, refer for specialist opinion and determine whether a patient needs to be admitted or not.
Kate Knowles, 46, of West Bridgford is one of three ANPs already working in the acute medicine team at the QMC. She assesses patients admitted via GPs as emergency medical admissions and makes clinical decisions leading to treatment.
She said: "It is a challenge, but the good news is that with these new ANPs we can offer the flexibility of highly-skilled nursing and treat patients more quickly."
The five new ANPs takes to seven the total number of ANPs now working in the QMC's busy Emergency Department. Jenny Leggott, the trust's director of nursing, said the appointment of the new nurses would improve care and reduce waiting times in A&E.