Senior Health nursing opportunities
Please take a look at why nursing elder people in hospital is a unique challenge – and of course a growing area of healthcare with new learning and best practice emerging regularly. You can hear below from some of our team, and check out opportunities on this website and on NHS Jobs.
Dr Bryony Elliott
Care Group Lead for Senior Health, Consultant Orthogeriatrician
Hear what our Care Group Lead for Senior Health, Consultant Orthogeriatrician Dr Bryony Elliott has to say about the teamworking between nurses, doctors and other health professionals as part of striving for Outstanding Care, Every Time.
Senior Health Band 5 Staff Nurse
Staff nurse Georgy Lloyd on why working with older people is such a great experience and offers excellent learning and development opportunities for nurses.
The challenges and rewards of working with elderly patients and their families is just one reason why the first few months of Band 5 staff nurse Georgy Lloyd’s time with St George’s have been so enjoyable.
Georgy joined the Senior Health ward nursing team immediately after qualifying.
“I knew from my placements and previous experience that working with elderly people was very different and brings distinct challenges,” she said.
“You are not just helping people’s physical health recovery, but also regularly trying to help their mental health as many of our patients have dementia. This makes practical tasks, such as giving medication a different challenge. Patients can be confused, and slower-moving, so you have to work with them closely to find the best ways of looking after them.
“Given their age our patients are potentially more susceptible to things like sepsis, falls, respiratory problems and multiple conditions, so we are really focussed on reducing risks while aiding their recovery back towards independence, and giving them a high quality of care
“Another interesting and rewarding part of the job is the relationships you build with older people’s families. Sometimes patients are staying a long time with us for medical reasons, though of course we always try to help them to be at home as soon as clinically appropriate, which is a much better environment.”
Georgy also highlighted the excellent education and training opportunities in what is a growing and developing specialty.
“Clearly we have an ageing population and as dementia becomes more commonplace, there is more research and work on good practices and new ways of caring for people. We have a dedicated practice educator and a lot of both formal learning through courses, and informal learning from really supportive colleagues.
“End of Life Care does come into it, of course, given the nature of the patients we are caring for, and we get lots of support and training in tackling this challenging part of the job too.”
Student to staff nurse transition “It can be a slightly scary prospect making the transition from student to staff nurse, but it was made so easy here because of the friendliness and support,” Georgy explained.
“As well as the preceptorship, and day to day support of other nurses on the ward, we have really positive consultants. They take the time to explain things and really involve nurses in discussing how best to look after patients.
“You need that support to give you confidence, help you settle and ensure you really contribute to providing the best possible care. I felt part of the team from day one, and it has been a great place to start my nursing career.”