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Monday 21 June 2021
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Palliative care team win student nursing placement of the year
Members of Salford Royals' specialist palliative care nursing team accept their prize

Salford Royal’s palliative care team named student nursing placement of the year

The palliative care team at Salford Royal won ‘Student Placement of the Year – Hospital’ at the Student Nursing Times Awards 2017.


The team, who provide care and support for patients with life limiting conditions, were recognised for the placement they designed for second and third year nursing students which gives them valuable experience of palliative care.


They were awarded ‘Student Placement of the Year – Hospital’ at the awards held in The Hilton, Park Lane on 28 April as part of an awards ceremony celebrating the very best in student nurses and nurse education.  Angela Kelly, palliative care specialist nurse and team leader, and Debra Morris, palliative care specialist nurse, presented to the panel of judges as part of the competition process.  The judges described the presentation as excellent and said they were impressed by it as it was unique, personal and warm.  They also said the team demonstrated that encapsulating the whole picture of care is key to providing an exceptional placement experience.


The team attribute their success to lots of planning and support as well as going the extra mile to help students feel comfortable and confident whilst on placement. Before their placement students can meet with the team and discuss areas they may need support with so the team can arrange tailor made activities to help them develop.


Students on a placement with the palliative care team are supported throughout their placement and work with a multi-disciplinary team on all areas of care including Advanced Care Planning. The placement has grown extremely popular with students and the team receive direct interest from students despite placements being allocated.


Previously the team only offered one-day bespoke placements but after researching the benefits palliative care experience brings they decided to trial longer placements of four, six or eight weeks. Research shows exposure to palliative care is beneficial to all student nurses, regardless of what clinical discipline they specialise in, as many of the skills such as pain management and communicating sensitively are transferable.


Debra said: “It feels fantastic to win; all the hard work we do has been recognised. The team put everything into their work, so we’re really proud of our success.”


Team leader, Angela said: “We developed our placements because it’s important to us to have a positive impact on the future NHS workforce. Two of our placement student nurses have gone to specialise in palliative care/ oncology after their placement, changing the direction of their career.


“When we won we were really shocked, we were one of 12 finalists. The atmosphere on the day was amazing with so many passionate people in one place; in challenging times it’s great to celebrate success in the NHS.”


Vicky Pinchard, a student nurse who completed her placement with the palliative care team in 2014, said: “From the start it was clear huge amounts of preparation had gone into organising my placement. I was assigned a mentor, but I was also supported and welcomed by the whole team. My mentor, Deborah, was accommodating, knowledgeable, approachable and friendly. She encouraged questions and inspired me to immerse myself in the specialist role of the palliative care team.


“When I showed an interest in certain areas of palliative care she went out of her way to arrange bespoke placements or find relevant articles and literature. This placement made a huge impact on me, spending time with the palliative care team and gaining knowledge of this area gave me the confidence to apply for a job in oncology and I got a conditional offer! I believe this is due to the impact made on me by Deborah and the team.”