Clinical manager flies the flag for care homes at top nursing awards

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Lindsay Rees

A clinical manager at a south coast care home provider is in the running for one of the UK’s top professional nursing awards.

Colten Care’s Lindsay Rees is the only representative of the private care home sector on the five-strong shortlist for the Nursing Older People category at the RCNi Nurse Awards.

Now in their 32nd year, the awards cover all aspects of nursing and mainly attract entries from across the NHS. This year, 700 entries have been whittled down to 80 finalists in 16 categories.

Lindsay’s nomination followed the success of a nurse-led risk factor plan she introduced to cut the number of falls experienced by residents at two pilot nursing homes, Braemar Lodge in Salisbury and a dedicated dementia home, The Aldbury, in Poole.

Her aim is to help nurse colleagues understand the causes of falls and put measures in place to reduce the risk while promoting residents’ independence and wellbeing.

The results have been dramatic. Braemar Lodge is recording 47% fewer falls per week with The Aldbury witnessing a reduction of 35%.
Lindsay, who did her nurse training at Southampton General Hospital and has strategic clinical care responsibilities for more than 1,000 Colten Care residents, said: “The more we can reduce the number of falls in care homes, the more we can support residents’ quality of life and avoid hospital admissions.

“I’ve had such a lot of support from colleagues and managers at Colten Care to make this initiative a reality and I’m thrilled that our success so far has been recognised nationally with a place on the Nurse Awards shortlist.”

To meet the awards criteria, Lindsay presented evidence to a panel of expert judges on how her falls initiatives has made a positive difference to nursing practice.

Aside from the Nurse Awards, Lindsay chose falls prevention as the focus of her year on a Masters-level programme at King’s College London, the UK’s top university for nursing.

She has also presented findings from her falls initiative to the Health Education England Patient Advisory Forum and at a House of Lords reception.
Following the success of the pilots, Colten Care is looking to roll out the same falls management approach across all 21 of its homes in Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Sussex.

Colten Care Operations Director Elaine Farrer said: “Lindsay introduced and developed the individual falls risk factor assessment after extensive research, including an in-depth literature review, and backed it with a staff education and awareness programme. We have been delighted to support her as part of her career development.

“Lindsay’s success goes to show that care home nursing is a desirable, prestigious job and that professionals are needed to deliver high-quality care to residents.
“The Nurse Awards are a celebration of all that’s best in nursing care and what Lindsay is doing is certainly a prime example of that.”
Winners of the Nurse Awards will be announced at a ceremony at the Westminster Park Plaza, London, on Wednesday 3 July, 2019.

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