CLCH finalist for RCNi Nurse Awards 2020
Rosa Ungpakorn (pictured left), is an Advanced Nurse Practitioner in Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust's homeless health service, and has been announced as a finalist in the Royal College of Nursing Institute (RCNi) Nurse Awards 2020, for our Westminster Street Nurse project.
Rosa is a finalist in the Advanced Nurse Practitioner Award category, which recognises the impact that advanced level nursing has on patient care and nursing practice. The Westminster Street Nurse project has been shortlisted based on its creativity and innovation, the impact it has on patient experience and health outcomes, and how it continues to contribute to nursing knowledge.
Westminster Street Nurse delivers advanced practice nursing care directly to the most vulnerable and underserved people experiencing homelessness. Nurse practitioners proactively seek out people on the street to offer on the spot clinical assessments, diagnosis and treatment for a range of health conditions. The project was based on evidence from Rosa’s qualitative description study titled 'Health-related street outreach: exploring the perceptions of homeless people with experience of sleeping rough', which was published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing in September 2019. Rosa also consulted healthcare and housing workers providing street outreach around the UK to identify best practice.
A six-month review of Westminster Street Nurse showed an increase of over 400% in the number of patients seen via street outreach as compared to the same period in the previous year. It confirmed that people experiencing homelessness were in need of proactive engagement by health services, with 50% of them not registered with a general practitioner (GP), and 80% not accessing homeless health service clinics. Feedback from patients also demonstrated that the Westminster Street Nurse project was delivering trauma-informed healthcare that takes into account how complex trauma can impact health
decisions, and maintains a gentle proactive approach.
Anonymous patient feedback: “The nurses were fantastic, they came and dressed my hands and my head on the streets, the care put in to that really saved my life […] they would never give up when I would tell them to leave me alone. I could see that there was care there and it was really important […] they became a stable element in my life when my life was unstable".
Looking forward, Rosa is currently developing guidance for health-related street outreach to people experiencing homelessness, which will serve as a useful tool for sharing the knowledge and best practice examples she has gained during her research and the Westminster Street Nurse project. Her aim is to apply for Royal College of Nursing endorsement so this guidance can contribute nationally to nursing practice in homeless healthcare.
You can read more about this essential service, which provides a lifeline to some of society's vulnerable in Rosa's interview for the Royal College of Nursing bulletin. Read Rosa's interview on the Royal College of Nursing website.