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Jamie holding his award and certificate

Trainee Nursing Associate, Jamie Barnes who works on Ward 13 at Airedale NHS Foundation trust has won an outstanding educational achievement award for his work during the pandemic.

The award was presented last week (Thurs 12 May) by Health Education England North East and Yorkshire, at a ceremony at the University of Bolton.

It was a double celebration as Jamie has also been nominated by the university for the ‘Best Apprentice Award for Nursing Associates’ category. Aleeza Khan, Programme Leader at the Bradford campus nominated Jamie together with full support from the team at Airedale Hospital where he works.

Jamie, who had a background in mental health, wanted to join the nurse associate programme to work in an acute Trust, making a difference to healthcare as well as for his own personal growth.

On joining the programme Jamie was allocated to an Acute Respiratory ward as a trainee and as soon as he started work at the trust the pandemic began, with a heavy reliance on respiratory and acute medicine throughout the UK.

Jane McSharry from Airedale NHS Foundation Trust says:

“Jamie had no acute clinical experience and he not only stepped up, he was a team player and was hardworking and dedicated. At the same time as working on the ward during an unprecedented time and witnessing very difficult circumstances for our patients and their families, he was developing his knowledge and clinical skills with his online learning at University and doing really well academically.

Jamie is a true example of compassion, courage, commitment, excellent communication and competence.”

Aleeza Khan, Programme Leader at the Bradford campus says:

“He is the future of the workforce and this course has enabled him to shine.  He is a pleasure to teach and support and he is a real champion of the trainee nursing associate role.”

Jamie says:

“I think that I’m still in shock after winning the award for Outstanding Educational Achievement at the Health Education England Awards, and then to also be nominated for Apprentice of the Year at the University awards is really overwhelming.

I came from a background of Health Care but had only worked within Mental Health and never within the NHS, so initially wasn’t sure I’d even be accepted onto the programme, but I have been given so much support and encouragement throughout my time here which has really helped me to succeed and develop both my knowledge and confidence.

I really wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without the support and warm welcome that I have been given from the team at Airedale and the whole of Ward 13 and also the educational support from Aleeza and Bolton University.”

Airedale NHS Foundation Trust became a pilot site for the Nursing Associates programme in 2017 and the very first graduates qualified in 2019. Three of these are now training to be Registered Nurses and will graduate this year.

The trust has two intakes of trainee Nursing Associates each year, one in December with Bradford University and one in April with Bolton University where the course is delivered locally at Bradford College.  For more information on the role click here.

Contact Jane McSharry, Senior Nurse for Practice Development at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust, jane.mcsharry@nhs.net for further details.