Despite the challenges of Covid-19, Learning Disability nurses – who say they’re not the best at showcasing their work – are reporting considerable success in improving best practice for both themselves and their patients.
Over the past two years, nine staff have gained a qualification in Positive Behavioural Support. This is a challenging university-led academic course which reflects the model of care used in learning disability. It involves teaching alternative skills to deal with problem behaviours and achieve outcomes which are more meaningful to patients and their families.
Within NHS Forth Valley, there has been a longstanding goal to draw up a policy in respect of relationships, sexual health and wellbeing for people with learning disabilities. A team of nurses has now completed a best practice document ‘Making Choices Keeping Safe’. Using work formulated in NHS Lothian as a reference point, they also liaised with specialist sexual health practitioners and held a wider consultation throughout Forth Valley. They now hope this policy will be adopted by other professionals and organisations to ensure a consistent approach in upholding the rights of people with learning disabilities.
The Learning Disability service also say they are fortunate to have to have their own nurse who undertakes ANP training. This nurse already takes the lead in Epilepsy EIC (excellence in care) audits and works with Learning Disability consultants to set up, run and develop a specific health maintenance clinic for those with learning disabilities.
Interim Lead Nurse Norah Quinn said: “Last but not least, we are extremely proud of our two Queens Nurses, one who has just received their award and another who is just beginning their journey on this very prestigious award. To have two in our service and working in Forth Valley is a huge achievement.
“As the Interim Lead Nurse in Learning Disabilities, I am very proud of the commitment, dedication and continued drive all our nurses continually show. We are in good hands for our future success.”