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Bradford teams make Nursing Times 2015 Awards Final


An innovative new project between Bradford Teaching Hospitals and The University of Bradford which introduces student nurses to the benefits of clinical research has been shortlisted for a national award.

The Foundation Trust’s clinical research nurses and the University’s Faculty of Health Studies secured a place in the prestigious Nursing Times Awards 2015 final after introducing the pioneering educational programme into the BSc undergraduate nursing degree course.

The team beat more than 100 other organisations across the country to make it to the final shortlist of 11.

Lead clinical research nurse for Haematology and Trust lead on the project, Victoria Drew, explained: “Clinical research exists to improve patient care and develop new treatments. It’s a vital and central part of the NHS, but until last year there was little recognition of this important work within the undergraduate nursing education programme locally.

“Along with the support of colleagues at The University of Bradford’s Faculty of Health Studies, we initiated a new section into the course which generates awareness of what we do and how research can be transferred back into nursing practice, bringing real benefits to the patients on our wards.

“This new programme increases focus on evidence-based practice and embeds the importance of research into future front-line nursing by developing an NHS research culture from the start.”

Now, through a series of lectures and a working placement within the Trust’s team during the initial three years of training, student nurses gain valuable knowledge on how research is improving care within the NHS, as well as specialist insight into the contribution which clinical research nurses bring to the process.

Students also learn about the life span of a clinical trial and hear from experts in mental health, quality and safety, and paediatrics.

Initial findings from student nurse evaluations have been extremely positive about the impact of the collaboration and the increased awareness which it has generated around clinical research.

Interim chief nurse, Jackie Ardley, added: “This is a fantastic achievement for the team and we are keeping our fingers crossed for the finals.

“This joint collaboration has helped broaden the experience that student nurses gain during their training and complements the learning they acquire during their time at university. It also ensures that student nurses can critically appraise research as it provides them with a better understanding of how they can use this evidence and translate it into practice.

“Prior to the start of this course, students were not routinely exposed to clinical research in practice and didn’t sometimes understand the contribution that our research nurses make. Now, by having greater knowledge of how research is conducted, they are able to provide an even better patient experience and enhance our care and services.”

The clinical research nurse team, which includes Paula Sharratt, Kelly Young and Angela Grange, were supported by Janice High at the University of Bradford and former Bradford Royal Infirmary clinical research nurse, Karl Ward (who has since moved to Leeds Teaching Hospitals).

Janice High, Children’s Nursing Lecturer and Education Support at the University of Bradford, commented: “It has been a pleasure working alongside the clinical research nursing team at Bradford Teaching Hospitals. Their enthusiasm and passion for their role has shone through during the workshops and we can clearly see how this has impacted upon student nurses’ knowledge and understanding of clinical research given the very positive feedback we have received.

“We hope to continue and further develop our collaboration with the team moving forward. Innovation in nurse education is key to ensuring that student nurses develop into competent and safe practitioners who are committed to ensuring patients receive the best quality care both within the NHS and beyond.”

The Nursing Times Awards take place at the Grosvenor Hotel, London, on November 12.

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