Date: 05 December 2018
CRN South London’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer Clare Meachin has revealed that her passion for nursing remains undiminished.
Clare qualified as a nurse at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in 1984, and she worked on WG Grace Ward, which is named after amateur cricketer William Gilbert Grace, for six months before moving to Plymouth.
In the late 1980s, Clare returned to London to work at University College Hospital as a Ward Sister before choosing to work overseas at a Leprosy Hospital and a Motherless Babies Home in Nigeria.
Clare said: “I’m really happy that I became a nurse; it is something that I always wanted to do and nurses make a real difference to people’s lives.
“The nursing profession has held a special place within my heart since I was five-years-old, and I have never lost that passion for the job. My registration to practice as a nurse is still up to date.”
During her career, Clare has also worked to improve care for drug users and the homeless in Oxford, and she has led a team of 50 across a number of specialities as a Lead Research Nurse in Devon.
She described her time in Nigeria as the beginning of her journey into clinical research.
Clare continued: “My work in Nigeria was the start of my research journey. We were in the country for four years, and it is an experience I will never forget.
“The Leprosy Hospital when I arrived was in complete disrepair, and there was no running water or electricity. Many of the patients with leprosy would stay in hospital for around 18 months. They would make their infections worse by not resting, which led to them developing terrible ulcers on their feet.
“I managed to reduce the length of a patient’s stay in hospital by ensuring they had plaster casts on their feet, providing clean bed linen and ensuring they were all given one hot, nutritious meal per day.”
Clare became a diabetes research nurse in 2000, and she rose to become CRN South London’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer in 2015.
She works one day a week on secondment for the NIHR CRN Coordinating Centre (CC) as Associate Director of Nursing. Her role involves helping to oversee the organisation’s research nursing strategy.
The Deputy Chief Operating Officer said she is proud to be helping to develop the leadership skills of nurses and midwives through the 70@70 Leader Programme.
She said: “I feel passionately about the contribution that nurses and midwives make to research, and through my work at NIHR CC on the 70@70 Senior Nurse and Midwife Research Leader Programme we will be driving improvements in future care.
“Nurses and midwives are by far the largest group of health care professionals and have such an important contribution to make to research delivery. 70@70 will strengthen the research voice and influence of nurses and midwives in NHS provider organisations.”
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