A new book which it is hoped will become a valuable resource for student nurses giving them unique insights into patient and carer experiences of care at home has been launched at a special event held at Royal Stoke Hospital.
The book – ‘Collected Stories: being cared for at home’ – was developed in partnership between Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (MPFT), the organisation which provides physical and mental health, learning disability and adult social care services across Staffordshire, Stoke-on-Trent and Shropshire, and the School of Nursing and Midwifery at Keele University.
The stories included in the collection comprise a range of experiences for patients and carers who have interacted with MPFT’s community nursing services, including both physical and mental health and each story concludes with an opportunity for the reader to reflect and learning points to consider.
Alison Bussey, Director of Nursing at MPFT said: “I am delighted and proud to work with our partners at Keele University to launch this collection of stories which will provide nurses, allied health professionals and students with an insight into the experiences of our patients and carers.
“It recognises the experiences of the care they receive and, more importantly, will provide the patients’ viewpoint of what it is they value from their District Nursing and community nursing services.”
The book was funded by Keele University and the launch event coincided with the first in a series of public seminars held by the School of Nursing and Midwifery to mark 70 years of the NHS.
Dr Patricia Owen, Head of School of Nursing and Midwifery at Keele University said: “This book is a fantastic collaboration between our team and our partners at MPFT and will be a truly valuable resource for our education programmes. We hope that students and other learners will use the book as a tool for learning long into the future."
Dr Julie Green, Director of Postgraduate programmes and Award Lead for Specialist Community Nursing at Keele said: “It was great to combine the launch with the first in our series of seminars to celebrate 70 years of the NHS and with this talk having a particularly close link to district nursing and the experience of a carer; it was a perfect time to launch the book.”
The first seminar was entitled ‘Letters, life and love stories (You can make a difference)’ and was led by speaker Tommy Whitelaw, a friend of the university and a passionate campaigner for the awareness of dementia and caring.
Tommy also provided the first story for the book, telling his story of caring for his late mother Joan, who had vascular dementia, including his poignant personal experience of the vital role district nurses played in his journey as a carer.
Tommy said: “It is a great honour and I am truly humbled to have been asked by my friends at Keele University and MPFT to both speak at this event and to provide the first story for this fantastic book which I urge all aspiring nurses and anyone involved in care to read.”