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Kirsty Locker

Job title: SCPHN Student (previously PHN Staff Nurse)

Area of work: Ivybridge - Southern Team

I started working for DCC as a Public Health Staff Nurse in January 2021. I previously worked as a Midwife in Plymouth and felt it was time for a new challenge, one that included more time working with others within my local community. Whilst considering a change in job role, I spoke to a midwifery colleague of mine who informed me that she had recently applied to work for DCC and that they had other employment opportunities available with comparable terms and conditions to the NHS, which I found to be very appealing.

So, I had a look on their employment page and found an advert for a Public Health Staff Nurse. The job description and specification appeared to be exactly what I was looking for, so I decided to apply. Their rates of pay appeared to be fair, and they appeared to have good pension options. The job role consisted of supporting Health Visitors by completing universal new-birth visits, running urgent weight clinics, and carrying out follow up visits/clinic appointments as necessary. The role enabled me to work autonomously within the community as I had hoped, yet at the same time I knew there was always a level of support available at all times throughout the day should I require any additional input.

When I joined DCC I was given ample time to complete the induction package and e-learning modules and was allocated a line manager and team leader to refer to at any time should assistance be required. Protected supervision time was also given every month in order for me to liaise with my line manager to ensure that I was comfortable with my workload and to discuss any further support that might be necessary going forward. I was also informed that we were entitled to protected reading and admin time, which made the role even more appealing knowing that ample time to prepare for appointments and complete necessary documentation was a priority to the service. The support I have received from my line manager, team leader and colleagues within my team since I joined DCC has been second to none.

I enjoyed my role, the opportunity to disseminate public health knowledge and advice, and provide support to families so much, that I decided I would like to progress further within the service, so I applied to become a SCPHN student in order to become a qualified Health Visitor. Progressing within the service was very much supported and encouraged and I have been able to complete my training whilst on secondment, ensuring that I have a job available at the end of my studies. I would highly recommend working for DCC to anybody considering a change in career or looking for career progression, Devon is a beautiful place to both live and work.