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DN 15%282%29 55 unit profile .pdf

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Dermatology Unit
Gill Godsell, Kate Blake
The dermatology unit at Circle’s
Nottingham NHS Treatment Centre has
a long-established commitment to getting
the best out of its nurses. Regular staff
training and a readiness to try new ideas
has led to the unit, now in its 8th year,
becoming a highly effective service.

alopecia and skin cancer. These sessions
are designed to continue the professional
development of our staff.
This commitment to training has
meant that the dermatology unit has
two nurse consultants able to see
new patients; one who sees new acne
patients, and a second who sees referrals
with suspected BCC. Nurses who see
new patients must be highly qualified
before being signed off as competent
by a consultant and as our consultant
nurses are highly trained they are able to
incorporate diagnosis into their role.

Meet the team
The nursing team consists of 21 trained
nurses comprised of a lead nurse,
2 nurse consultants, 3 team leaders,
1 advanced nurse practitioner and
4 clinical nurse specialists. They are
supported by 15 healthcare assistants
and a large team of administrators, who
play a key role in the smooth running
of the department. We are part of a
team that also includes 7 consultant
dermatologists, 2 trainee dermatologists
and one Mohs clinical fellow.
All of our nurses recognise that they
are members of a multi-skilled team. A
unit that contains such a wide variety of
skills allows CircleNottingham to provide
a comprehensive range of dermatology
treatments, in which our nurses take a
number of leading roles. The department
has developed team leader posts in the
outpatient clinic, skin surgery unit and
phototherapy department, with a senior
healthcare assistant supporting each
team leader. One of our advanced nurse
practitioners undertakes skin surgery to
remove skin lesions, and we are currently
developing a nurse-led leg ulcer service.
Our nurses also recognise the good
that can be done in communities. We
are developing community clinics to
provide care closer to the home and
have already developed a community

Gillian Godsell OBE is a Skin Cancer
Nurse Consultant, and Kate Blake is Lead
Dermatology Nurse at CircleNottingham

Members of the CircleNottingham dermatology team.
surgery service run by our accredited
GP with an extended role in skin surgery
and skin cancer. This service means that
we can provide treatment and surgery
closer to home, at great convenience to
the patient.

Staff education
The dermatology department is fully
committed to the education of its staff.
We have successfully supported nurses to
complete Masters and First Level degrees
as well as the non-medical prescribing
course, Advanced Life Support course
and numerous other specialist courses
and study days. The department currently
has 5 practitioners trained in nonclinical prescribing, with a further two
due to complete their training this year.
Additionally to this, we have a nurse who
undertakes patch-test reading with the
support of our skin allergy specialist, Dr
John English.
To maintain high quality standards,
regular training is essential. To ensure
that both the needs of the patient and
national requirements are met, we
provide monthly educational sessions
on a designated subject. The last three
sessions have covered topics such as acne,

Good relationships
Our nursing unit prides itself on the
relationship shared between nurses,
consultants and managers. It is a
relationship that permeates every aspect
of the unit. In the pursuit of providing the
best possible care for the patient, nurses
are encouraged and trusted by managers
to take ownership of their roles. All staff
are actively encouraged to speak up if
they see something they believe could be
improved. This reinforces the feeling of
staff being partners within the company.
We are extremely excited to see
what the coming years have for the
CircleNottingham dermatology service.
We have been exploring new avenues of
dermatology, such as telemedicine, in an
effort to treat our patients in ever more
effective ways. The initial results of this
experiment look promising, and we will
continue to explore new pathways in the
pursuit of good patient care.
We have come far and faced down
some tough issues, but the nursing team
has stayed true and come out the other
side stronger than ever. We hope to see
our unit expand further as we take on
more skilled staff to complement our preDN
existing team.

Dermatological Nursing 2016, Vol 15, No 2


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