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Leicester Medical School, establishes a postgraduate certificate in minor injuries

In 2002, in partnership with Leicestershire Primary and Acute NHS Trust, the Leicester Medical School established, a new Postgraduate Certificate in ‘Minor Injuries’. The learning content is designed to equip health professional staff with the knowledge and skills to assess diagnose and treat patients who present with minor injuries in the community or acute setting. 

The work utilised the resources of the Medical School and was led by Senior Trust Nurses Frank Durning and Mahendra Joshi, Accident and Emergency Consultants from University Hospitals NHS Trust Mr Bodiwala and Mr Evans, with academic support from Dr Elizabeth Anderson and Professor Stewart Petersen of the Medical School. 

The course was driven by health care organisations required to prepare nurses and other allied health care professionals for advanced practice to meet the needs of minor injury patients other than acute accident and emergency admissions. 

The government’s aim to deliver a rapid and effective service will see the development of new units for minor injuries both within acute and primary care sectors. The new walk-in unit at Loughborough plays a vital teaching role in the course.

To date 11 nurses completed the course in 2002 and nine in 2003. Nurses from the first cohort received their certificates from Professor Ian Lauder, Dean of the Medical School, at a short presentation ceremony in September 2003. The course hopes to develop modules for therapists and specialities such as child minor injury and surgical procedures in 2004. Successful candidates are able to advance to a Master’s Degree in Clinical Science, choosing other modules form a portfolio of learning opportunities.

Dr Anderson commented: "The course is rigorous and demanding with nurses attending modules and developing their clinical skills over 9 months. The two first courses have been positively evaluated as successful, with nurses reaching a high standard."

Frank Durning and Mahendra Joshi, course tutors, commented: "We have worked together in the clinical arena of A&E for the last twenty years and we were aware that there was a need for a training programme that would be practical as well as academically accredited. The concept of the course content was born out of our extensive practical experience and we took personal ownership over the pathway of training that the students received. 

"Development of the course content took a great deal of hard work especially while trying to balance the demands of an already established function in our own units. It has been very rewarding to watch the progress of students through the course and to have a valuable resource of clinical talent emerge on completion. 

"The trust conferred a special award to us in September 2002 to recognise the value of the training programme that had been produced and utilised across Leicestershire."

Kate Stacey, who has successfully completed the course, gave her views on the benefits it had brought to her: "Highlights included the medical model approach to teaching (history taking, clinical exam, ordering investigations and diagnosing) and the positive philosophy of the University. I personally found the anatomy sessions very informative and they enabled me to link theory to practice more effectively. The speakers were all experienced and still involved in clinical practice, hence they provided relevant and informative sessions. 

"On successfully completing the course in December 2002, I realised this was the path I wanted to pursue. I successfully applied for an Emergency Nurse Practitioner post at Loughborough and am now able to put all that knowledge into practice. The new post has also been a promotion to a G grade in recognition of my newly acquired skills, which is an added bonus.

"The course has enabled me to be an autonomous practitioner in minor injuries, thereby raising my self-esteem and job satisfaction, whilst most importantly providing a quality service to service users."

Further information is available from Dr Liz Anderson, Senior Lecture in Shared Learning, Department of Medical and Social Care Education, University of Leicester, tel 0116 252 2946, fax 0116 223 1585, email 

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Last updated: 18 December 2003 11:47
Created by: Barbara Whiteman

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