I’ve had a passion for infection prevention control for many years. Previously, I worked at Nuffield Health as an Infection Prevention Coordinator. This was a fantastic role as it helped develop my base understanding of how to prevent infections. In December 2019 I was thrilled to join Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust in December 2019, as Trainee Infection Prevention Nurse. At the time, I could have never imagined the challenges that awaited in 2020!
In January 2020 I was delighted to be given the opportunity to be able to go back to university. Having enrolled at the University of Essex Online, I began studying for my Infection Control Diploma, which I am still undertaking at this time. I completed the first stage of qualification in July 2020, obtaining my Infection Control Certificate, helping me reach my goal of Infection Control Nurse. I am continuing my studies to complete the Infection Control Diploma which runs until May 2021.
In short, the course has been absolutely fascinating and I’ve already learned so much! It’s enabled me to develop an in-depth knowledge of the microbiology of infectious diseases and how to interpret statistics of infections – all very handy knowledge to have when faced with a pandemic!
The core aim of infection prevention control is to help support and provide specialist advice to ensure patient safety and to support staff. The current situation involving COVID-19 means that it’s new terrority for everyone – including those of us working in infection prevention control.
Throughout the pandemic, both the Trust and my team have been incredibly supportive, both in my work and helping with my university studies. They’ve always taken the time to provide me with learning opportunities, which I really find so beneficial.
Personally, I would encourage everyone to try and find something that interests them within their role, even if it’s something small. Once you know what that thing is, learn as much as you possibly can about it – you never know where it might lead you!
Written by Amy Barnes, Infection Control Nurse