Kirsty’s mum is a nurse and was the inspiration for Kirsty to choose the same vocation. After qualifying from Queen Elizabeth’s School of Nursing in Birmingham in 1994, Kirsty’s early nursing experience was gained in general medical admissions and then in Accident & Emergency.
After starting a family, Kirsty worked part-time in general practice nursing and studied for her Master’s degree in Advanced nurse practice long term conditions. She’s currently a practice nurse in a small GP surgery doing everything from basic treatments to chronic disease management, as well as prescribing.
“We’re a small surgery with 3,500 patients,” explains Kirsty “most of them I know and I’ve been caring for them for the last 10 years. The familiarity that the patient has, seeing the same faces, takes a lot of the anxiety out of coming to the surgery, especially for patients who need regular treatment.
“It’s one of the few roles where you’re looking after people from the cradle to the grave, from babies having their first vaccinations right up to people in their 90s starting their end of life care. You are sometimes looking after the whole family. Being a practice nurse is the most amazing job ever!”
Kirsty says she has never been a ‘one-job’ person and is also a Specialist Advisor for the Care Quality Commission as well as a teaching fellow on the Fundamentals of Practice Nursing at Birmingham City University.
Kirsty was nominated for a Cavell Star Award for going above and beyond for her team mates as fellow practice nurse and colleague Jen Murray explains,
“Kirsty is probably the kindest and most supportive person I know. She has taught me every practice nurse skill I know and has given me the confidence to fly. Every team member agrees that Kirsty is truly brilliant and inspiring. If we don’t know the answer to something, we know that Kirsty will! She has not only given me the skills and time to be a nurse, but she has also become a close friend.”
Karen Storey, National Primary Care Nursing Lead, NHS England presented Kirsty with her Cavell Star Award and it put a smile on Kirsty’s face,
“I was really surprised, I didn’t know anything about it! But I don’t actually think I’m any different to any of the other practice nurses working in my area.
“There’s only two of us working in my surgery but we are part of a wonderful network of practice nurses working across Solihull. We all keep in contact and share our challenges and successes which is so important to everyone’s resilience and wellbeing. It can be tough working in primary care nursing so having support like that is so valuable.”