I started my mental health nursing career in 1984. After qualifying as a Registered Mental Health Nurse, my career included short periods in older people’s continuing care dementia and adult acute services. This was followed by some time working in the private sector and Social Services. From 1994 until 2005 I worked for the local mental health trust within older person’s functional day services culminating in managing two, multi disciplinary day hospitals. During this time I was involved in a number of projects including setting up a peripatetic day centre with Age Concern Norfolk to support patients who were discharged from the service. Following my growing interest in nurse education, I took up the post of Clinical Practice Facilitator in 2005, this involved working between the mental health provider and the UEA, supporting mentors and student nurses in practice. I have been in my current role as Lecturer in Mental Health Nursing since January 2006. I myself have been a student in higher education for many years, working towards a Diploma in Nursing, Degree in Policy Planning and Leadership for Healthcare Professionals and Masters in Higher Education.
I am the Course Director for the BSc Mental Health Nursing and am also the Accreditation of Prior Learning Coordinator for Pre Registration Programmes in the School of Health Sciences.
I teach on the pre-registration nursing programme and am the mental health lead for module 3 – Health and Wellbeing. I am also one of a team of Manual Handling Instructors. My particular nursing practice interests include improving the physical health and wellbeing of mental health service users and older people’s mental health. I am also interested in career pathways in nursing and the employability skills of our graduates.